Sahti recipe by Kari Likovuori
I have been accustomed to sahti from Häme region where many
brewers use rye and juniper to produce dark sahti.
This time I wanted to make a medium strength sahti at
about 7.5% a.b.v that has an original gravity of something
like 1.080 (20 plato); finnish bakers yeast has an apparent
attenuation of about 65%.
I don't get very high yield when I'm
brewing sahti so I need some 22 kg of malts to get about 50-60
liters of sahti. Ok, that means...
20 kg 2-row pilsner malt (90%)
2 kg dark rye malt (10%)
50 l mash-in water (don't use more than 1:2.5)
100 g bakers yeast
juniper branches (if you have in hand)
100 liter kettle
Juniper is nice to have but not compulsory,
it balances the thick maltyness.
Heat the water to 65-67 degrees centigrade for mash
in temperature of about 62-65 degrees, let it rest until
entirely hydrolysed. Heat the mash to about 80-85
degrees for sparging, better still heat the mash
until it is boiling and hold there a couple of mins.
Sparging is done with whatever equipment available;
kuurna, ordinary lauter tun, loop-strainer. If you
use kuurna or lauter tun put the juniper on the bottom
before transfering the mash into the tun. When using
loop-strainer put the juniper into the mash during the
The first wort should be some 30+ liters of O.G.
1.095-1.100. After that you should sparge with hot
water (80+ degrees centigrade) and collect some
20 liters more. Last runnings will have O.G. of
1,050. During the sparging
you could take liter or
two aside, cool it and pitch the yeast. It's good
to have quickly starting fermentation.
When you have collected enough wort you can
boil it, but that's not neccessary. So, cool
your wort to some 25 degrees centigrade, add the
yeast starter and let the miracle happen. Be aware
that bakers yeast is VERY aggressive and might
flow over your fermentation tun. Also it might
be wise to arrange cooling to the fermenter; during
my last fermentation the temperature of the fermenter
was more than 10 degrees above the ambient temperature...
not good, it's good to have temperature somewhere
between 20-25 degrees.
After a day or two the primary fermentation is over
and the O.G. should be something like 1.030. Now transfer
the sahti to another vessel to leave as much trub
behind as possible. Place the vessel to cool place
(below 10 C) and let mature for a week or so, during
this cold storage the most of the yeast will sediment
in the bottom of the vessel. Transfer the sahti to bottles
or plastic cans and leave the yeast behind. Be aware that
sahti will still ferment and the containers should
have loose caps to let extra CO2 escape (or you could
let the CO2 out every day or two). Sahti is like British
real ale and it shouldn't have much CO2 when consumed.
Don't storage sahti in warm places (over 6-7 C) or it might turn
sour or it will attenuate too much.