Natalia Dudnik’s Russian Olivier Salad

My lovely wife, showing off her cooking skills. This is a great recipe for a vegetarian version of the Olivier salad. Now, I know there aren’t a lot of vegetarian Russian’s (blasphemy!), but it is quite a tasty substitute. If you want to do the regular meat version, just substitute cubed, pre-cooked ham for the mushrooms. Easy as that!

Beer Brewing – A Beginner’s Guide to Extract Brewing

This information is readily available around the internet.  Home Brewing has become a regular pastime of tons of people in the US.  Unfortunately everyone who gets into it ends up getting really heavy into it and forgets that folks that are just learning aren’t going to understand what they are talking about.  So I thought I would put a quick cheat-sheet together for those just getting into home brewing.  If you want to learn more of the advanced concepts and techniques, please check out the brewing or homebrewing article on Wikipedia and start checking out the many blogs out there.

 

Definitions:

Yeast
A single celled fungus.  These little guys are the most important part of brewing.  Everything we do is to make them happy. Since there are different thousands of kinds of yeast (at least), it is important that you buy the yeast from a brewers supply to make sure that you get a reasonably pure batch.WortA sugary liquid extracted from the mashing process.
Malted Grains
Germinated grains (e.g. started growing) that have been dried (which stops the growing process) with hot air.Malt ExtractFor the most part, in home brewing, this refers to malted grains that have been turned into a syrup or a powder, which contains all of the sugar that your yeast should need to eat during the fermentation process.
Hops
Come in many forms, such as pellets, plugs, and fresh whole flowers.  These are a close relative to the help plant that provide resins that Impart bitterness (using alpha and beta acids) and aroma to your beer.  These are not readily water soluble.
Alpha Acid
Heat and boiling (called isomerization) allow these types of acids to become soluble in water, which is why you steep the brew.  The more alpha acid a certain type of hop contains, the more bitterness it imparts to the beer.  The amount of alpha acid is usually listed on the package of the hops.
Beta Acid
It is important to use fresh, unoxidized hops to extract the small amount of beta acids available.

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