The Homebrewer’s Almanac: A Seasonal Guide to Making Your Own Beer from Scratch offers a month-by-month primer on making your own beer from the ingredients all around you, and the beer recipes are perfect for those brewers interested in creative ways to use these culinary ingredients in their brewing.
Carrots are a great year-round crop that can be harvested at different times, and they store well too. Wild carrot is a member of the Apiaceae or Umbelliferae family—the parsleys. Other members of the family look very similar and can be highly toxic, such as Poison Hemlock. It is critical to know the difference when harvesting, and this is one plant you should be absolutely certain about when foraging. For those who are hesitant about foraging for wild carrot but want to try a carrot seed beer, you can harvest the seeds from a known cultivated variety as a substitute (if you’re not growing them yourself, ask a farmer to allow some carrots to go to seed).
Carrot seeds add a whole other dimension to a beer. Our carrot-seed ale uses just the seed heads and gives a hint of carrot and a layer of apricot. Use the whole seed head for ease of harvest, only 5 ounces (142 g) per 5-gallon (19 l) batch. We’ve used the seeds both in the boil, for 60 minutes and steeped in the fermentor, as it was traditionally done. Both yield interesting results and are recommended.
Batch Size: 5 gallons (19 liters)
8 lb (3.6 kg) Vienna
2 lb (907 g) Munich
Mash in with 4 gallons (15 l) water to hit 147°F (64°C). Sparge with 6½ gallons (24.6 l) water at 168°F (75°C).
0.5 oz (14 g) Nugget at 60 minutes or
1 lb (454 g) carrot taproot for bittering at 60 minutes, in place of hops
5 oz (142 g) carrot seed heads at 60 minutes
LENGTH OF BOIL
60 minutes with 15-minute whirlpool at flameout
Ferment at 68°F (20°C) for one week and allow to rise to 70°F (21°C) until fermentation is complete.
This recipe was featured in an excerpt from The Homebrewer's Almanac: A Seasonal Guide To Making Your Own Beer From Scratch, by Marika Josephson, Aaron Kleindon, and Ryan Tockstein, published by The Countryman Press, and reprinted in our Cooking with Beer 2016 special issue with permission from the publisher. Buy your copy of The Homebrewer's Almanac at better bookstores, homebrew shops, craft-beer stores, or your favorite online retailer.
For more information about Scratch Brewing, see this Breakout Brewer profile from the August/September 2015 issue of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®.
Authors: Marika Josephson, Aaron Kleindon, and Ryan Tockstein of Scratch Brewing