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Smashing Pumpkin—adding real pumpkin

Hi all! My Smashing Pumpkin kit just arrived and I am super-excited to get it going. I read that if I want to add actual pumpkin to the kit ingredients, to make sure to ALSO add “a few extra pounds of 6-row”.

Can you explain to me why this is necessary and what this will do?

I appreciate your insights!

—Matt

In short, the theory is that the enzymes available in the 6-row barley will convert the pumpkin starches to sugars.

Hi Brick and thanks for your response! SO by adding the barley I am also increasing the alcohol content?

In the past I have added pumpkin, and other extra ingredients to kits… should I make it a rule to ALSO add extra fermentables?

[quote=“MCalKP”]Hi Brick and thanks for your response! SO by adding the barley I am also increasing the alcohol content?

In the past I have added pumpkin, and other extra ingredients to kits… should I make it a rule to ALSO add extra fermentables?[/quote]

Not necessarily to add extra fermentables. The 6-row will convert the pumpkin starches if conducting a mini-mash, thus adding extra fermentables and most importantly, helping with chill haze from the unconverted starch in the pumpkin.

You don’t have to do a mini-mash with this kit, but I would recommend it. It is also good practice to see if AG brewing is something you want to do.

Thanks for your response, Loopie! Meeting helpful people like you is a really great part of this hobby for me! Cheers!

—Matt

I believe you need to cook the pumpkin first. For that reason most of us use canned pumpkin from the grocery. I just did my annual pumpkin ale this week and used plain canned pumpkin but you can use pumpkin pie spiced instead and skip or reduce your spice addition.

Agree with one caveat.

If you get pre-mixed pumpkin pie cans you really have to inspect the labels for the additives and preservatives, some of which can mess with the flavor, or be inhospitable to the yeast. (I’m not sure why the cans need preservatives, but whatever…)

There’s a good article in this month’s Zymurgy about pumpkin ales:

http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/p ... rent-issue

:cheers:

In case you can’t access that, he recommends Libby’s pumpkin 100% pumpkin in the can (no additives in it) and the use of pie spices (you can mix your own or just buy the McCormick Pumpkin Pie Spice mix).

I am using the McComick spice this year. In the past I have mixed spices to make my own but find it difficult to get the right blend so I am leaving it up to them since they have done it for a long time. I used store brand canned 100% pumpkin in the mash. 3 tablespoons of the spice at flame out (20 gallons) and will mix more with vodka to make a tincture to add to kegs.

Was going to do a"pumpkin" beer with sweet potatoes, not sure if it should be done in the mash or boil. I’ve done pumpkin beers in the past with canned pumpkin in the boil and it did little to the flavor, just left me with a ton of crap in the fermentor and gave some color. Looking to have some flavor other then spices in the beer, not sure if sweet potatoes will accomplish this.

I think sweet potatos are treated exactly like pumpkin. Can’t remember where I saw it, but sweet potatos seem to be the new “rage.”

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