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I love pop-corn (who doesn't I guess), so I think it might be used in beer during mash.

Has anyone used them? How did it work? How should I do it? Should I expect something interesting from it?

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Charlie Bamforth ("pope of foam") doesn't like popcorn. Apparently it keeps him out of movie theatres. I imagine it's the smell of diacetyl is that does it. – mdma Apr 5 '13 at 12:11
up vote 6 down vote accepted

Yes you can mash with popped corn, it can be thought of basically as torrified corn.

You do not, however want to get the buttery flavor that we typically associate with popcorn in your beer so make sure you use an air popper beforehand.

You are going to get the typical corn flavors come through, not necessarily a "popcorn" flavor, if that is what you are shooting for (which you shouldn't be).

As far as how you should do it. I would pop it first and then mash it down so that you can get most of the air out. I can only imagine trying to fit a couple pounds of popped corn into a mash...

Use it how you would typically use corn in your mash.

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Wow. This actually sounds like an interesting experiment. – Graham Apr 4 '13 at 13:35
Agreed, theoretically you should get some increased head retention from the additional proteins that are made available in the popped corn. – Jared Meyering Apr 4 '13 at 15:01
But doesn't popping corn involve using oils? That's not going to be good for the head retention. – mdma Apr 5 '13 at 12:10
air popping doesn't involve any oils. – Jared Meyering Apr 5 '13 at 13:21

I have made two batches of beer using air popped corn. They were extract ales, my first batch used 1lb of corn, my second batch used 2 lbs of popped corn, it takes a while to dissolve the popped corn in a kettle, but it will fit. The first time I had it was from a micro brewery for a popcorn festival, and I was surprised as it was good, so I just had make some, overall it wasn't bad, one of my workmates was sure I had added salt, but that is the power of suggestion, it being popcorn and all, now I learned not to say anything until they have had a bottle or so, it's interesting how the imagination works on people. PS airpopping(No oil) negates mashing as the starches are modified for direct conversion with your malts. Any oisl will screw everything up.

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