Caramel, cara or crystal malts are all part of a larger family of caramel malts that have a special kilning process that increase the amount of sugars you get from them prior to any mashing of your own.
The malsters put the barley through a process called “stewing” during the malting process where they raise the water temperature to 158°, which we all know is a great temperature for converting our starches into sugars! The only difference with these little sugars and the ones you’re getting out of your mash is they’re complex and stand a higher chance of standing up against your yeast. Allowing more flavor to come through.
These malts can do many things to your bews, and mostly they make a better end product. They’ve been noted to be flavor boosting, body building and foam forming. If you’re looking to bring one of your recipes to the next level you should consider using some and see how they can help. Just note you don’t need to add them to your mash tun during that mashing process. You can add it to the boil if you like to bring out more flavor and character.
# CaraPils – (1.5 to 3L) – Pilsner malt steeped to add mouthfeel without much color or flavor.
# CaraFoam – (1.5L) – Carapils-like malt from Weyerermann
# Caramel Malts – Anywhere from 10L to 120 L
# CaraVienna (CaraVienne) – (20 to 22L) – Vienna Malt based crystal malt product.
# CaraHell – (10 to 11L)
# CaraRed – (20L) – Adds a great red hue – great in Red ales or Scottish -/L beers.
# CaraAmber – (27L) – Intensifies color and aroma.
# CaraMunich – (43 to57L) – Varies by maltster, adds toffee, roast
# CaraAroma – (120L) – Adds color, armoa, coffe, roast, toast to stouts and porters
# Carafa I (337L), Carafa II (425L) and Carafa III (470L) – Adds color, aroma to stouts,schwartzbiers, dopplebock, etc.
Photo: Epic Beer