When you consider malt, malted milk balls, milkshakes, or other sweet treats may be the first things that come to mind. However, malt is incredibly versatile and can be found in various goods, including vinegar, cereals, beer, and more; although it has been traditionally utilized as a sweetener and flavor-enhancer, some research has found that interchanging the sugar for malt extract could score a pop of extra nutrients to your diet and may be associated with numerous health benefits, including improvements in mood, heart health, and digestion.
It is a kind of cereal grain, such as barley, that has experienced a drying process identified as malting. The cereal grain is first dipped in water to grow and then dried with hot air to prevent germination. This process makes the grain produce specific enzymes required to break starches into smaller chains of sugars. Other enzymes created during this process assist in breaking the proteins in the grain into more modest amino acids that the yeast can use.
American malt liquor usually gets a nasty blow as “sleazy,” “bottom shelf,” or somehow completely for drunkards because of the cheap adjuncts addition to the malted barley to get a more powerful ABV in the complete beer. Let us not ignore that malt liquor is brewed with much the same components and processes of active American-style lagers; if you’ve ever enjoyed an HG (High Gravity) Lager, you’re drinking malt liquor. Legally, the name “malt liquor” includes any alcoholic beverage comprising malted barley with 5% or more ABV. In some nations, beer must fall below a precise ABV, and beer that passes the given mark is labeled “malt liquor.”
What makes malt liquor?
To achieve that more powerful ABV, malt liquors frequently contain rice, corn, or dextrose to increase the number of fermentable sugars in the wort, which improves the final alcohol strength. Though the first documented naming of malt liquor occurred in 1690 in England, American Malt Liquor did not appear until the abolition of Prohibition in 1933. The Depression made beer a provocation for brewers because there was not enough metal for bottle caps or cans and not enough malt to make beer. In the years following, the answer for brewers such as Clarence “Click” Koerber of Grand Valley Brewing and the brewers at Goetz Brewing was to use added sugar to raise the alcohol content of their lager.
American malt liquor is commonly sold in 40 fluid ounce bottles instead of most beers’ standard 12 fluid ounce bottle. The forties (as they are colloquially called) are often regarded as being sold exclusively in a thin brown bag. For a time, it was popular opinion that concealing the label of an alcoholic beverage would make one less likely to get charged with drinking in public. However, law enforcement is more than wise to the attempted consumption of open containers in public, and a thin brown bag does not serve as natural protection from being charged. If anything, the brown bag is intended for discreetly and safely transporting alcohol home.
Malt vinegar is a vinegar obtained from malted grains of barley. It has a tart taste and can enhance the characteristics of other foods it is paired with; it is highly known for topping fish and chips.
- Malt vinegar is created from the same grains worked for making beer, and so it has a related lemony, nutty, and caramel flavor profile as malted ale.
- It can change in color from light to dark brown. Some derived varieties are clear.
- It is usually located in condiment or bakery walks at the grocery store.
- It’s a culinary strength in the Canadian and British menus.
How Is Malt Vinegar Made?
All sorts of vinegar are produced by fermenting an alcohol synthesis called ethanol. Any element containing ethanol—such as beer, wine, cider, or champagne—can be built into vinegar.
Malt vinegar is executed through a double fermentation method in which barley grains are malted and brewed into ale. Here is a step-by-step manner of how malt vinegar is created:
- The process of malting begins by germinating grains of barley. This process entails immersing the grains in water to support sprout growth.
- The grains are dried to create malt.
- The malt is brewed into ale.
- The second fermentation step turns the ale into vinegar.
- Lastly, the vinegar is briefly aged, which contributes to the vinegar’s sharp mouthfeel.
Throughout the fermentation process, bacteria are applied to break down the ethanol. This produces byproducts of acetic acid and various minerals and vitamins. Characteristic notes originate from a vinegar’s source ingredient—such as beer, cider, or wine. Because malt vinegar is formed by malting barley, there are most minor traces of grain in the ingredient list, so it is not gluten-free.
Malt vs. Shake
A milkshake is a sweet beverage generally made from ice cream, milk, and flavorings such as fruit syrup or chocolate. The earliest noted use of the word “milkshake” was in the late 1800s, but it wasn’t practiced to explain the diner-friendly drink we understand today: The first milkshakes were made with eggs and whiskey, kind of like eggnog. Over the following few decades, though, the elements changed—the eggs were exchanged for ice cream and the booze for sweet syrups—and it became a wholesome, soda shop staple. Malt is a kind of milkshake. The only element that isolates it from its strawberry, chocolate, and vanilla counterparts is the extension of malted milk powder. Invented by Walgreens representative Ivar “Pop” Coulson in 1922, malted milkshakes were among the first modern milkshakes