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For centuries Germans have been famous for their superior quality beer. Here are some facts about the heritage of the greatest beer makers in the world.

Want to Drink a Great Beer? Go German!

Want to Drink a Great Beer? Go German!One of the various things the German people are known for is beer. Beer is an essential piece of their tradition and heritage, with over thirteen-hundred varied breweries spanning the country. As far as per capita beer consumption, the Germans are only behind the Czechs and the Irish. The history of Germanic brew spans back to the beginnings of the nation when monks started to experiment with brewing around 1000 A.D. The country's leaders eventually started to legislate the manufacturing of beer as brewing started to be more and more profitable. The most well-known and significant component to effect Germanic brewing came in 1516 with the Bavarian Reinheitsgebot, or the purity standard.To make sure that Bavarian beers were only the highest quality the Duke Wilhelm IV authorized the Bavarian Reinheitsgebot. Hops, barley, and water are the only ingredients that should go in in beer according to the law. The Reinheitsgebot is the oldest regulation placed on food in the world and has remain unchanged in nearly five-hundred years. Yeast is the only inclusion to the list of crucial ingredients in the act. Yeast found naturally in the air was what manufacturers before used. Bavarian breweries were soon considered the superior makers of beer because of the strict standard of quality following by the purity requirement. As the prominence of the Bavarian breweries spread around the nation other manufacturers started to follow the proclamation as well.German beers have a long-standing reputation of making quality brews made only from the purest ingredients as a result of the Reinheitsgebot. As time passed and Germany began to ship out beer, some cities became famed brewing locations. By fifteen-hundred, Scandinavia, Holland, England, and as far as India principally recieved their beer from one of the more than 600 breweries in the city of Bremen. Two more famed brewing cities were Einbeck and Braunschweig. In modern-day Germany, the majority of the country's drinking people still choose fabbier, or draught beer, over bottled beer because of it's robust flavor and perfect amount of foam. In an effort to curtail more outbreaks of the bubonic plague German beer steins became popular about the time the purity standard came about and are still used today.During the time of the bubonic plague, Germany originated a lot of laws to prevent its citizens from getting ill. Massive amounts of infected flies would land in people's food and spread the infection. This led to the German beer stein, a beverage container with a hinged lid that could be used with the thumb so a person could stop infection and still be able to drink with one hand. Beer drinking rose exponentially as citizens started to realize the disease spread in unsanitary conditions with brackish pools of water. Originally made of stoneware with pewter lids, steins grew in popularity. Steins began to be manufactured entirely of pewter for nearly 300 years as the pewter guild grew. Eventually, porcelain and silver German beer steins were introduced and are still produced today.Nowadays there are over 1350 breweries within Germany's lands that produce over five-thousand brands of beer. The Benedictine abbey Weihenstephan, which has been producing beer since one-thousand and forty, is reported as the oldest brewery in the world. The most concentrated area in Germany for beer makers is the Franconia region of Bavaria by the city Bamberg. German breweries produce a wide variety of tastes and brands of beer with the majority of them able to be placed under ales or lagers. Some brands of beer may have an alcoholic content as high as 12%, making them more potent than a lot of wines even though most beers have an alcoholic content ranging from 4.7% to 5.4%.

Natural Organic Products And Modern Life

Natural Organic Products And Modern Life

Its not always easy to find natural organic products for the person who has already gone organic, so you can imagine what type of hurdle that might be for those who are still only looking to go organic. Many people, despite their good intentions, will balk at having to buy their weekly grocery supplies from a health food or specialty store. Over and above the prohibitive cost you would more than likely incur, is the ingrained dislike of anything that is even remotely thought of as good for you. This naturally enough stems for our childhoods when good was almost literally shoved down our throats with the expectation that we would grow to like everything green and nasty tasting. The funny thing is, that we do (to a very great extent there are a few exceptions!), but we would still readily enough cut off our noses to spite our faces and stay from our good resolutions to buy natural organic products if we had to find our way through a health food store. Buying our natural organic products from our normal grocery store or supermarket almost makes it seem like a natural (if you will excuse the pun) exercise in grocery shopping. Sure our monthly grocery bill would go up, but we would still have the satisfaction of knowing that we purchased our natural organic products not from a health food store! However, all of that notwithstanding, when you go to buy your natural organic products be it at the health food store, or the grocers around the corner, there are a few things that you will want to look out for, and these involve the small matter of seals. Not the marine or the army variety, but the variety which involves a stamp or a certification of some sort. The most commonly recognized of these seals is the USDA seal of organic certification. There are many such different seals for the numerous natural organic products, but it is best if you first learn about them. For instance even though an organic product might be USDA certified, it doesnt necessarily have to have 100% of organic products contained within its packaging. In fact, unless it specifically states on the packaging that you are buying a 100% Organic product, you will most likely be getting natural organic products which have only 95% of organic produce or even only a minimum of natural organic products contained within it. As mentioned earlier, the easiest way to tell the difference is by carefully looking at the packaging of the natural organic products that you are buying. 100% Organic will give you (not unnaturally enough) a hundred percent of organic produce in your products. A simple Organic, will yield over 95% of organic products in your foods, and the very misleading Made with Organic Products will be the one to give you a minimum of only 70% of organic products found within the bounds of the packaging.

Wine Tasting A Preference For Red Or White

Wine Tasting  A Preference For Red Or White

For many of us wine is something of a mystery and when we are buying wine it comes down to a simple choice between red and white and what our local supermarket has available in its "special offer" bin. But wine really isn't such a mystery at all and, in this area at least, a little knowledge can get you a very long way.The starting point is to understand the different types of wine available and here we can divide wines into five main groups.Red Wine.Red wine is fermented from what many people would refer to as red grapes but which are in fact more correctly named black grapes. In the case of red wine the grapes are used whole for fermentation, that is to say complete with skin and pips, and it is the skin which gives the wine its red color.There are a wide variety of black grapes available each with its own distinctive flavor which is derived principally from the soil and climate in the region where the grapes are grown. This, together with the winemaker's art of mixing, allows us to enjoy a range of "red wine" s from the deep blackcurrant color of the full-bodied and intensely flavored wines produced from the Cabernet Sauvignon grape to the lighter cherry and raspberry taste gained from the Pinot Noir grape.Ros wine.Ros wines are again produced from black grapes but, in this case, the juice is separated off part way through the fermentation process and at the point at which the winemaker determines that the juice contains sufficient color to give the finished wine the pink color that he is looking for.Once again the flavor of the finished wine depends very much on the grape used for fermentation and some of the finest ros wines are produced from the Grenache grape. Often thought of as a French grape, Grenache noir is the world's most widely planted grape and probably originates from Spain. As well as often being used to produce "ros wine" s, it is also commonly used as a base for many blended wines including such well known names as Chateauneuf du Pape and Cotes du Rhne.Blush wine.Blush wine is sometimes referred to as California's version of ros wine and is produced in much the same way as ros wine. In this case however the grape most often used is the Zinfandal grape which produces a slightly sweet pink wine which also shows a somewhat blue color. The Zinfandal grape originates in Croatia but has been grown widely in the US for more than 150 years now and is considered indigenous to California.White wine.Believe it or not white wine can be made from either white or black grapes, as the juice from either grape is colorless and it is only the skin of the black grape that gives red wine its color.The flavors available across the range of "white wine" s vary tremendously according to the grape used, the winemaker's art and the degree to which different juices are blended to create the finished wine.Dry white wines often come from grapes such as Muscadet or Sauvignon Blanc while richer fruit-flavored wines are more likely to be based upon the Chardonnay grape.Sparkling wines.Sparkling wines, of which Champagne is clearly the best known example, are based upon a dry white wine. Here the wine is bottled and a solution of sugar and yeast is added before the bottle is sealed. The sugar and yeast solution causes a secondary fermentation and sealing the bottles at the start of this process traps the gas produced by this fermentation within the wine to give it its sparkle when the bottle is opened.

Home Brew Steam Generator Helpful Yet Dangerous

Home Brew Steam Generator Helpful Yet Dangerous

Raising the temperature of mash can be a slow, yet necessary process and using a home brew steam generator can cut the time. However, using steam to heat the mash can also be dangerous as steam can cause sever burns, quickly. While water heated to boiling at 212-degrees Fahrenheit is hot, steam heated to the same temperature will do more damage simply because boiling water begins to cool as soon as it touches your skin. Steam, on the other hand, will need to condense to water before beginning to cool off, giving it more time to inflict more damage and pain.With that in mind, a "home brew steam generator" can decrease the time it takes to heat the mash by considering the same principal. Essentially, steam can be generated in a pressure cooker and then piped into the container holding the mash. As the steam enters, it maintains its temperature longer than boiling water will and increases the temperature of the mash at a rate of about one degree centigrade, 33.8 degrees Fahrenheit, per minute.There are some precautions to be used for making your own home brew steam generator and having the right heat source is needed, or else the heat of the steam may lack enough power to produce the sustained release of steam that is needed to achieve consistent heat exchange.Ease Of Construction For Steam GeneratorTo build your own home brew steam generator you will need an electric hot plate capable of about 2100 watt, along with a pressure cooker, copper tubing, the pressure weight for the cooker and a shut-off valve. The copper tubing is attached to the lid of the pressure cooker by drilling and threading the hole and using a copper connector available at most hardware stores.The other end of the first copper tube is connected to the input of the shut-off valve. Another tube, connected to the output of the valve goes into the top of the container of mash and extends to the bottom with at least 13-inches lying near the floor of the container.The end of this tube is pinched closed and a series of small holes, about one-sixteenth of an inch are drilled a half-inch apart to complete the home brew steam generator. Fill the pressure cooker about three-fourths full of clean water and turn on the heat source, leaving the pressure weight off for now. When steam begins to rise from the top tube, clearing any air from the cooker, place the weight in position and the steam will be forced through the tube, in the bottom of the mash, beginning the heating process.Stir the mash occasionally during heating to keep the temperature uniform. To stop the heating process, turn off the heat source and remove the pressure weight. You can also at this time close the shut-off valve.

Ancient Uses Of Tapestries

Generally large size looms have been used to weave tapestries on. Many types of threads have been used to produce laces like gold, silk and silver threads weaving several pictures of subjects together with those of the peasant scenes after Teniers, Biblical history, mythology, etc. Tapestries have been used as wall hangings but unlike needlework, it was woven on a loom. It was also formed in proportions much larger than would usually be used in hand-stitched embroidery; tapestry panels ranging from ten or twelve feet in height and twenty feet long are pretty common. The chief medium was wool, but in special cases silk was also used. In some of the finest works the use of gold and silver can be seen. The primary heart of tapestry weaving from the year 1500 has been Brussels.But the outputs over the years have immensely varied in quality. Biblical and Roman history, peasant, mythology and scenes ensuing Teniers were some of the subjects. Most seventeenth-and eighteenth-century works are let down by the truth that throughout the years a murky brownish image has faded their red dyes. Brussels tapestries mostly hold a mark with a shield with the letter 'B' on either side. At times weavers add their names or initials, in the work. There were two major factories in France. Both the Gobelins and Beauvais were rooted in the second half of the seventeenth century. While the former was a private concern with State support, the latter was a Royal factory and it was only in the late eighteenth century when one could buy any of its productions. Though both did work of the utmost quality, Beauvais was mainly celebrated for a series of panels established on the Fables of La Fontaine, and for various sets of settee covers and chairs.The former was also made at Gobelins, where around 1775 they made beautiful and exemplary sets of furniture covers and matching wall hangings. Example of these types of decorative harmony is to be seen in a room designed by Robert Adam, remains at Osterley Park, near London. A set of furniture (shorn of its wall-hangings but even now intact Gobelins covers) made for Moor Park in Hertfordshire, is housed in the Museum of Art in Philadelphia. A small amount of of these rich ensembles are intact even now, but a collection of tapestries that had been made for a store at Croome Park in Warwickshire has been sold off for a sum of 50,000, and is now seen in the New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art. Again in France at Aubusson, tapestry panels, chair covers and also tapestry carpets were assembled. Most of the output belongs to the nineteenth century, despite the pattern of work is similar to an earlier era.Philip and Michael Wauters, supplying to global markets, they wove their tapestry in Antwerp. Works popularized by other plants were copied here with accomplishment, these Flemish tapestries were also at times confused with the English productions they copied. Brussels was the center head of tapestry weaving.

High Altitude Breads

Can you make bread and buns in the mountains?We got a call from California this week, I can make great bread in L.A. but at my cabin in Montana, it doesnt turn out so well.We would like to help. This summer, you might find yourself at a cabin or in an RV high in the mountains. That doesnt mean you cant enjoy "great bread" .Yeast products are not as sensitive to altitude as chemically leavened products. We have worked with yeasted breads at almost 11,000 feet in the Rockies. The trick is realizing that you are working with living creatures and giving them the culture that they need to thrive ina warm, moist environment. In a healthy culture, yeast organisms feed on the sugars and starches in the dough, multiply rapidly, and expel carbon dioxide gases that make the dough rise. If the dough is not moist enough, it will take much longer for the dough to rise. Yeast organisms are very sensitive to temperature. If the dough is too cool, the yeast organisms do not multiply as rapidly and produce less gas.The recipe that works so well for you on the coast may not work so well in the Rockies. But it may not be the altitude; it may be the humidity. In a humid location, unsealed flour absorbs moisture; in a dry climate, that same flour dries out. If you add the same amount of water to flour in both locations, the dough in the humid climate will be much moister. But the solution is simple: add enough water that the dough is soft and moist.At higher altitudes, your kitchen may be cooler than it is at home. A few degrees difference in temperature will make a substantial difference in the time it takes your dough to rise. Compensate by taking advantage of the warmest spot in the kitchen. (At 11,000 feet in the Rockies, we had to move a tent to the warmest spot we could find, banking the tent into the sun.)There are some other tricks that you can deploy to help that yeast along. A little extra sugar will feed the yeast and speed growth. An extra teaspoon per loaf will do and probably wont make a noticeable difference in your recipe. Salt retards yeast growth. If you cut the amount of salt in a recipe by 1/2 teaspoon per loaf, you will speed the yeast along.Be patient, be willing to experiment a little, and be cognizant of the yeast culture and youll soon have perfect bread at any altitude.

Summary

For centuries Germans have been famous for their superior quality beer. Here are some facts about the heritage of the greatest beer makers in the world.