This is a proven method of home brewing beer from black bread rusk without any special equipment. Aside from the ingredients, you’ll only need pots, cans, bottles, and gauze. Ultimately you’ll end up with a natural beverage slightly reminiscent of the legendary English Guinness.
Warning! The suggested recipe is for a beverage that only imitates the taste of a beer but technically is not one. It is a simplified variant which doesn’t require a multi-hour wort boiling and maintaining temperature pauses (for the conversion of malt).
- Water – 5 liters
- Rey bread – 2.2 lbs/1 kilo
- Hop cones – 1 oz/30 grams
- Sugar – 10.5-12 oz/300-350 grams
- Yeast – 0.2 oz/5 grams of dry (0.7 oz/20 grams of pressed) baker’s or brewer’s yeast per 5 liters of malt
- Fermented rye malt – 5.5 oz/150 grams (optional)
Theory. Any black or malt rye bread without additives or odorants will do. The fewer the contents, the better.
You can buy dried hop cones in drug stores or brewing shops. In order for the beer to turn out moderately bitter, it is preferable to use hops with 4.5-5% alpha acids. Pharmaceuticals contain no information about the content of alpha acids. Only brewing hops are marked. That’s the main reason why pharmaceutical hops are rarely used for beer brewing–it’s hard to predict the bitterness.
Bread beer ABV depends on the sugar fermentation–1% of the fermented sugars in the wort yield 0.6% ABV. According to the proportions in the recipe, the approximate ABV of the beverage will be 4%. You can adjust the alcohol content at your own discretion, changing the amount of sugar. However, remember that 6-8% or more ABV is an acquired taste, and below 2% ABV is more like kvass.
It is advisable to use top fermentation brewer’s yeast (add according to the instructions for 5 liters of wort). If there is no such strain, the usual dry or baker’s pressed yeast will do, but a slight alcohol smell may appear.
Fermented rye malt (the main purpose of which is baking fragrant bread) adds light malt notes to the taste, but you can do without this ingredient without losing much in the taste.
Black Bread Beer Recipe
- Put hop cones into a pot, pour 200 ml of water, and simmer for 30 minutes stirring every 5-6 minutes and then cool down to a room temperature. Thanks to simmering hops will give water most of the aromatic and flavoring substances.
- Heat the oven to 180°C. Cut the bread into thin slices 1-1.5″/3-4 cm wide and spread the pieces evenly on a dry baking sheet and put it in the oven for 20-25 minutes to get rusks.
The more extensive the baking of the bread, the darker the beer is going to turn out. But you must not allow the rusks to burn. Otherwise, you’ll notice a striking bitterness.
- Put the rusks into a 5-liter pot, add fermented rye malt (optional) and 100 grams of sugar. Pour the cold hop decoction with cones.
- Activate yeast according to the label instructions: in most cases, you just have to mix a teaspoon of sugar with warm water in a glass (under 30°C) until you see froth on the surface.
- Add activated yeast to a pot with rusks.
- Stir it until it becomes a homogenous mass. Cover the pot with a lid and leave it for 24 hours in a dark place with a temperature of 20-28°C.
- After a day add 200 grams of sugar to the wort and pour in 2.5 liters of water. Mix it up.
- Evenly distribute the mixture into two 3-liter vessels, wrap their bottlenecks with a gauze and leave it for 3 days in a dark room at room temperature for fermentation. Mix the contents every 12 hours for the first 2 days.
- Filter the wort through a kitchen sieve or gauze and then hermetically seal the liquid part.
- Pour the remaining pulp with 1 liter of boiling water, stir it up, cover with a lid, let it brew for 30 minutes, and then filter it. Steaming allows to extract all of the necessary substances from bread and hop.
- Bring the liquid part of the steamed pulp to a boil, boil for 5 minutes, remove from the stove, cool to room temperature and filter through a gauze.
- Mix the cold infusion with the fermented and filtered wort obtained at step 9.
The bread beer is ready, but it will be flat or slightly fizzy. If it’s alright with you then you can bottle the beverage and skip to the 15th step of the recipe.
- Add 50 grams of sugar to the wort and mix until dissolved for carbonization (saturation with carbon dioxide).
- Pour the bread beer into glass or plastic (more preferable) bottles, leaving at least 4-5 cm of free space in the bottleneck. Seal tightly, leave for 5-6 hours in a dark place at a temperature of 20-28°C.
If you don’t have glass bottles with wire-bale tops (shown in the photo above) you should better use common plastic bottles.
Adding a small amount of sugar will cause a slight refermentation, which will saturate the beer with carbon dioxide, making it carbonated.
- Put the bread beer in a fridge. Leave it for 15 days for maturing and taste enhancement.
Control the pressure in the bottles first 5 days and bleeds excess gas if needed in order to prevent an explosion.
The color depends on the type of bread and degree of cooking. Sometimes the beverage can turn out slightly browner.
Its shelf-life in a fridge is up to 6 months. Uncorked bottle should be consumed in 1-2 days. 3-5% ABV.