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Amylase enzyme is found in saliva where it converts starch into sugar. So how can you use the enzyme for a quicker and more efficient brewing experience? Learning how using amylase enzymes can effectively improve your brewing experience.
- Improve Your Brewing Skills: Here Is How to Use Amylase Enzyme
- Types of Amylase
- Benefits of Using Amylase Enzyme
- Factors That Affect the Effectiveness of Amylase Enzyme
- Frequently Asked Questions
Improve Your Brewing Skills: Here Is How to Use Amylase Enzyme
So you want to try all-grain brewing, But do you know how to use amylase enzymes? The first thing you do is increase the temperature of your mash to the range I will recommend below.
Once you have done that, add the amylase enzymes and ensure you don’t increase the temperature. The amylase enzymes will break down starch and maltose into sugar. Thus the yeast in your mash will have more to feed on, thus speeding the process.
After the time you set elapses (I recommend at least an hour), you can increase the temperature. This will halt the starch to sugar to starch conversion and stabilize your mash.
Types of Amylase
There are three Amylase enzymes: alpha-amylase, beta-amylase, and gamma amylase. However, I am mainly interested in only the first two amylase enzymes for your beer brewing project. Gamma-amylase breaks down starch slowly, and it works at a much lower pH than the first two.
The Alpha is the big bad wolf. It breaks down the large complex and insoluble starch into smaller molecules that can dissolve in water. Another interesting thing about alpha-amylase is that it is one of the most thermostable enzymes. The enzymes break down starch at a higher temperature than beta-amylase.
So for best results, make sure you use alpha-amylase at a temperature of 145°Fahrenheit to 158° Fahrenheit and use calcium as a cofactor.
This is another vital amylase enzyme in the brewing process. The beta-amylase is responsible for breaking down starch into soluble sugars. It works at temperatures between 131 and 149°Fahrenheit.
There is one crucial thing you should understand as you work with enzymes. Which is? Their activity rises to a peak but starts diminishing as the temperature rises. Therefore as the mixture approaches 149°Fahrenheit, beta-amylase is working at its peak rate.
That being said, it also gets denatured very fast due to the high temperature. This means that if you find a way for the mixture to stand at that optimal temperature, the beta-enzyme will break down maltose to soluble sugars very fast.
Benefits of Using Amylase Enzyme
Why are we encouraging you to use the amylase enzyme as a homebrewer? Here are the benefits you will get from using it:
- Faster Reaction: A catalyst has one job, to ensure a reaction takes a shorter period than it would have if you had not added it. Amylase enzymes work as catalysts in a brewing reaction, meaning you will get your beer in a shorter time.
- More Beer People: As the enzymes reaction is at its peak, it breaks down more maltose and sugar in the mash. So you get more beer.
- Thicker Beer: Alpha-amylase specializes in liquefaction. The more of it you use, the thicker and richer the resultant beer will be!
- Saves Water and Energy: The reaction is faster and more efficient, meaning you will use less water and less energy. So you will use less time, less water, and less energy but get more beer! If that does not sound efficient, I don’t know what will!
Factors That Affect the Effectiveness of Amylase Enzyme
What affects how effective the enzyme reaction is? Let’s look at the two main factors briefly.
- Temperature: At low temperatures, the enzyme’s reactions are slower. It rises as the temperatures rise and reach the peak before they start getting denatured.
- Amount of Enzymes: The more enzymes, the faster the reaction. That is why the reaction slows down as the enzymes start to get denatured due to high temperatures.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I Increase the Temperature After Adding Amylase Enzymes?
No, increasing the temperature at this point is a terrible idea. The best thing to do is to hold the temperature at the enzymes activation temperature for like one hour. This allows complete conversion of starch, after which you should cool it rapidly to the fermentation temperature.
When Should I Add the Amylase Enzyme?
You should add amylase enzymes to the mash after 30 minutes of boiling all your grains. And hold the temperature after adding the amylase enzymes.
How Much Amylase Enzyme Should You Add?
The amount of amylase enzyme to add depends on the mash you have. However, the recommended amount is 0.1 to 0.3 teaspoons per gallon. You can also use ¼ oz per 5 gallons of mash.
Do You Have to Use Amylase During Brewing?
No, you don’t have to use amylase during brewing. But using Alpha and beta-amylase makes the process faster and more efficient. Additionally, you get more alcohol and use less water and energy, so it is worth it.
It’s not compulsory to use amylase enzymes when you decide to brew your own beer. However, using it will make the process faster and smoother and give your beer a more dry taste. Now that you know how to use the enzyme Correctly, it’s time to try it. Happy brewing!