A main ingredient in most beers is malted barley, though the malting process can be applied to many other cereal grains. Malting is a process in which grains are allowed to germinate and then quickly dried in a kiln before the plant has a chance to fully develop. The malting process develops enzymes that are required to modify complex starches in the grain into simple fermentable sugars during a later step in the brewing process called mashing.
The Malting Process
- Raw grains are soaked to begin germination.
- Moisture and germination is maintained until the green 'acrospire reaches a length approximately the size of the grain. This takes approximately 5 days.
- Green malt is kiln dried until the level of moisture is reduced to about 6%.
- The brittle acrospires are separated from the grains, and the grains are packaged for shipping.
Types of Malt
- [Insert malt type here]