I snagged a 40 kilo sack of whole oats for me. I mean real oats, still in the seed. Why would I snag a 40 kilo sack of oats still in the seed, you might ask? And I’ll tell you the answer. Ale, my friends! Honest to goodness real ale, medieval style.
Moisten the grain and lay it out. Let it germinate. It takes about three days. The moment it germinates, put it in a vat with water and heat to a boil, at a ratio of about 2.25 lbs to the gallon, stirring occasionally and gently. When the water boils, let it roil about 3 minutes, then turn off the heat and leave the grain in the water as it cools. This will extract the grain sugar, a.k.a. malt. You can do it up to three times; each batch will make a weaker malt.
The first malt makes fine strong ale. The second makes small ale, which you can drink like cold pop while working the fields on a summer day. If you want to do a third malting, it is quite weak but still palatable. They used to call that last batch peasant ale. It was for beggars, the poor and for less valued farm hands.
Add some herbs such as yarrow and elderflower, perhaps a little acid such as lemon juice, put in a primary fermenter vat and ferment til the bubbling subsides. The moment the bubbling start’s to subside, it is drinkable. It takes only two or three days.
That’s real medieval ale. No bitterness and often served flat. It keeps about two weeks, if kept in a cool place. The first batch is strong–drink like beer. The second batch is weak in alcohol, and you can drink it all day as a thirst quencher.
By the way, it’s very nutritious. A lot like whole grain bread. It’s a bit different from beer, namely in that there are no hops, and it’s overall more beneficial for the body. Plus, the dregs can be used to make that disgusting iconic British food (which Daphne loves and I detest): Marmite!