hist-brewing: Ulla Ostergaard's Table Ale-brewing notes

adam larsen euphonic at flash.net
Wed Jul 5 11:18:56 PDT 2000


    This wonderful little beverage is as refreshing to me a good spiced
vit so this is the perfect season to whip it up as it should be ready by
August.  Once again i'd like to thank Mrs. Ostergaard for her fine
recipe and help compiling these posts.  Please consult the notes at the
end of the post as indicated by: ****  Oh, the measures are in American
terms unless stated otherwise.

Yield: 5 gallons


Grist Bill:

malt, pale: 6 pounds ( one pound ground to a flour like consistency)
rye, malted: 2 pounds
wheat, unmalted:  4 four pounds

Sugars:

treacle, dark: a  tin (454 grams)
honey, a citrus variety of some some sort:  1  pound

Wood:

young beech or birch bark:  a hand full

Gruit:

ground ivy, dried: 1 1/2 ounces
Linden flowers, dried: 2 ounces
Orange balm, dried & cut: 2 onces
juniper berries, dried: 2 ounces
Anise, freshly crushed: one tablespoon
cloves, freshly crush: one tablespoon

Preparation:

  "  Take the crushed wheat and allow it to sit in a covered pot along
with enough water to cover the cereal.  Keep it on a low heat for a
couple of hours so that the mix is quite warm to the touch  but take
care that it does not get hotter then a warm bath.  Add a half a pint or
so of water every half hour and stir well so as to keep down the heat. 1

    The day before you brew boil one once of  the ground ivy along with
a quart of  water for about  an hour and a half.  Strain off the hot
liqueur and place it in a clean jug and cap loosely as it cools.  When
the liqueur is cool seal the jug well."
    Mashing:

    "Take the now improved wheat mix and combine it along with half the
malt in your mash tub and two gallons of  water  that is too hot to
touch.  One can tell that the water is hot enough when  steam starts to
raise but the water has yet to bubble.   Mix the contents of the tub
well and allow the mash to set for two hours .2
    After the two hours has passed  add the remainder of the grist along
with a gallon of  boiled water and allow the mix to set for  about an
hour.  Next, draw off  half a gallon of  the sweet liquid and combine it
with an equal amount of  cold water which is then brought to a boil
before being mixed back into the tub. This procedure should be repeated
every hour or so over the course of the next three hours.  Lastly, add
two gallons of  boiled water, stir and wait fifteen minutes.
    After the mash is complete draw off  the sweet liquid into your brew
pot, pour it carefully back into your mash tub and allow the mash to
settle before drawing it off again.     After the liquid comes to a boil
add the Linden Flowers, syrup, half the bark, half of the balm and the
remaining dried ground ivy and two ounces of  the extract.  After the
liquid has boiled for half an hour draw off the liquid leaving behind
the pasty dregs." 3

Fermentation:

    "The liquid should be dropped onto the fresh dregs of  a finished
ale along with the honey.  If you have have no fresh dregs a liter or so
of  yeast slurry should be fine.  Once the ale has stopped working
transfer it to a second well cleaned cask or churn into which all the
remaining spices and bark are placed excepting the juniper."

Conditioning:

    "After the ale sets for two weeks taste it to see if it is well
bittered and aged, if it is not bitter enough add a tablespoon of
extract and wait another week to see if it meets expectations, if not
just repeat the previous step."
    "When the ale is ready to serve draw off  a large mug  and heat the
ale till it's too hot to touch before letting the juniper berries steep
for half an hour.  Strain off the liquid and pour it back into the cask
and serve."

*********************************************************

Notes:

1 When i experimented with this little technique i found that this meant
that roughly 110 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
2 My experience has shown that this method translates into a strike
water temperature of roughly 180 degrees Fahrenheit
3 My experiments have shown that  the O.G. for this recipe is from 1.043
to 1.047 at this stage of  the production process when using commercial
malts and unmalted wheat.  If you follow my suggestion below you should
expect an additional 2 to 4 points added to your original gravity.

- Obviously, this recipe has a decent chance of resulting in a stuck
mash which can be fixed by either substituting half the unmalted wheat
with malted wheat or by simply remashing when a stuck occurs.
Personally, i prefer the earlier option.
- I have found that typically this ale takes 4 or 5 weeks to mature
properly into a light bodied and well spiced ale.

- I have discovered that Mrs. Ostergaard was right about the approximate
vintage of this recipe in so far as the basic elements of the grist and
gruit are concern as indicated by records i overlooked at the old
Monopoly House museum.

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