Saturday, October 18, 2008

Hop To It!

It is time to harvest those hops. Get them off the vines before the rain ruins your chance at brewing some homegrown beer. Last Spring, we planted a little hop vine. We did not have high hopes for the hops, but we were very pleasantly surprised! For a little plant we used to cover an ugly fence, it sure did a good job producing Cascade Hops. The vine did a great job covering the fence and climbed the neighbor's tree!

Pick the hops when they make a papery sound when you rub a "flower" between your fingets. We picked them on a sunny afternoon and then dried them in 200 degree oven that evening.

It took about 2 hours to dry the hops and the house smell sorta, well, hoppy. Pleasant.. but also sorta wierd.
When the hops are dry stuff them into gallon ziplock bags. Press the air out of the bag and store in the freezer until ready to brew.

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