Beer making at home can be a very enjoyable activity. Not only can you save money by doing so, you can also impress your friends with your skill. Nothing is better than kicking back in your easy chair at night, drinking a beer. Just imagine how much better this will taste when you have brewed it yourself.

The first step in beer making is to gather your ingredients and supplies. Six pounds of unhopped pale malt extract, 2.5 ounces of hops, 1 package of ale liquid yeast and 2/3 cup priming sugar are needed. In addition, you will need a large pot with a capacity of three gallons. Larger is better though as there is less chance of you spilling your concoction. Tubing to siphon beer along with a clamp are needed as is an airtight fermenting bucket. Be sure to have a five gallon plastic bucket or glass carboy on hand also. The glass carboy is easier to keep sanitized and won’t leak so that is preferred. Gather an air lock and a stopper as well as a bottle filler. A floating thermometer is helpful and you will need supplies to store you beer. This requires a minimum of two cases of 12 ounce bottles for five gallons of beer along with bottle caps and a bottle capper. A sanitizing solution and bottle brushes are also required.

The first step in brewing beer is to boil the hops and pale malt extract for one hour. This sterilizes the extract while also releasing the bittering qualities of the hops. Next you will need to allow this hot mixture, known as wort, to cool to room temperature. Siphon the liquid into the fermenter and combine with water to make five gallons. Now add the yeast which will start the fermentation process. Allow this mixture to sit for one or two weeks.

Now that the beer is fully fermented, you will siphon it to another container to prepare it for bottling. Here you will add the priming sugars before siphoning the beer into bottles. Cap these bottles with a special capping device to ensure they are sealed. Now your beer will need to age for two to six weeks, allowing the yeast to ferment. This takes the remaining sugar and creates carbon dioxide, making it nice and bubbly. Beer may be consumed after one month although many prefer to allow it to sit for several months, allowing it to reach peak flavor.

Related: Home Beer of the Month

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