I’m brewing my first beer using specialty grains. The instructions say to steep them in 2 quarts of water and then transfer the liquid to a kettle bringing the total to 2 gallons. Someone at a brew supply store said that it was ok to steep the grains using 4 - 5 gallons rather than doing the transfer. Is this ok. I would rather not mess up this recipe. Thanks.
I just steep them in the water I will be brewing with. Usually more like 3.5 gallons or so only because of my kettle size. You don’t need to do it is a separate smaller amount of water.
IME I make notes on which spec. grains work for me and my tastes, and those that don’t. I always start small on amounts then add more depending on the taste. This helps out when formulating beers ‘You’ like for the future. Good luck!
Actually, there is a good reason for steeping the grains in a small volume of water rather than a larger one. There is a risk that you might over extract tannic compounds from the grains if you steep them in too large a volume of water. If you do or not depends on your water chemistry, with more highly buffered water less likely to cause problems. But to be safe, follow the directions of the guy at the brew shop.
it’s easier to maintain a temp with a smaller volume of water as well.
I agree with steeping in less water. You can heat the rest of the water in the main pot and get it close to boiling by the time the grains are done steeping. Speeds things up.