The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Barley Malt Powder

polo's picture
polo

Barley Malt Powder

I've done a quick search on this subject. but I am still a little confused. I have need for diastatic malt powder. I've searched local in my local shops here, but have only been able to fine a product labeled as "Barley Malt Powder", it contains no other ingredients.


So here is my question: If the product is labeled simply "Barley Malt Powder" how can one tell whether it is diastatic or non-diastatic. I know the difference between the two, I am just wondering which one I purchased. The constistency is that of a fine flour and it is mildly sweet, if that helps.


Thanks in advance.


Polo

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

or brown?  That would make it non-active.  Roasting alone would kill the enzymes.  Can you find the product online for details?

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

Along those same lines; the diastatic, along with being mildly sweet, still maintains that "raw flour" taste and mouth feel. It is only mildly off white in color.


The non-diastatic may have the "malt" taste we are more familiar with; more like malted milk powder, and more golden in color.


Is yours packaged for retail sale? Any usage directions? Instructions like "1/2 to 1 tsp per loaf" will indicate diastatic. Any mentions of enzymatic, or "helps break down starches to simple sugars", or the like, also indicates diastatic.

polo's picture
polo

The bag it came in is labeled simply "Barley Malt Powder" "no other ingredients". It does not contain any instructions for use. Purchased at a local health food store and generically labeled.


It does not look or taste roasted, but is light brown in color. I did leave one minor detail out, it does have a hint of the malted milk ball flavor in addition to being mildly sweet. Could I assume by this flavor that it is in fact the non-diastatic variety? If so I will need to order the diastatic type, I am sure I've seen it on the King Arthur website.


Thanks again for the input.


polo

wayne on FLUKE's picture
wayne on FLUKE

Sounds like what I have bought in health food stores. Some recipes do use as an alternative sweetener.


By the way, it attracts moisture so keep it tightly sealed and dry.


wayne

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

I would still lean more towards diastatic. If you have not already done so, you might inquire at your source, and/or maybe try to find the original source, and contact them.


That's just the feeling I get from your original, and subsequent descriptions, i.e., "mildly sweet", "hint of malt". Those are just the descriptions that come to my mind, along with the "raw flour" taste and mouth feel. The light brown does cause a little more concern, but your "light brown" may be my "off white".


I don't technically have the non diastatic to compare, but one would maybe expect, the malt flavor especially, to not be so subtle(in the nondiastatic).


I have toasted/roasted my own diastatic malt, and the results were pretty much like I expected nd malt to taste. Much bolder, and much more like, say, Ovaltine(non chocolate).


Good luck! Let us know what you find out.


Images of my own diastatic malt, raw and home roasted:


krummc's picture
krummc

diastatic malt has enzymes that will feed yeast.  non diastatic will not feed yeast.

nicodvb's picture
nicodvb

it's easy: mix together in a cup a touch of malt, 50 gr of AP flour and 150 gr of water in small quantities until you get a liquid compound, then heat up to 65°C in the microwave in small steps (intervals of 1 minute at 600W) mixing everytime.


When it's up to temperature you will get a gelatinized stuff. Close the cup, keep enveloped in a blanket (pile seems to work better) and wait 3 hours. If your malt is diastatic the gel will dissolve and you'll find a liquid and sweeet stuff with a nice malt flavour.


 


The malted barley I ground in the coffee-grinder was fantastic! Not a single particle of starch was left intact.

polo's picture
polo

Apparently we were posting at the same time. I will give this test a try.


Meanwhile I am waiting on a call back from the store. They did not know and were going to call the manufacturer.


Thanx

polo's picture
polo

.......the health food store and see what they tell me. I wonder though, if there is some sort of test I could conduct to tell me whether it was diastatic or non. Not that it is a big deal one way or the other, just curious.


again with the thanks


polo

polo's picture
polo

............according to the manufacturer what I have is non-diastatic malt powder. I will still try the test to further educate myself. Looks like I will be ordering diastatic malt powder from King Arthur.


 


Thanks again


polo

dsmithnc's picture
dsmithnc

I've ordered from these folks before.  Good service.  I ordered diastatic malt powder from them.


 


http://www.barryfarm.com/


 


Dick

davidg618's picture
davidg618

Malted barley, and other grains, are primarily malted to make beer. In the process of getting from malted grain to beer, the grain is mashed. Mashing consists of adding hot water at a very specific temperature to release the enzyme amylase (two versions) that convert starch to sugar. The conversion usually takes an hour to an hour-and-a-half. At the end of the process more hot water is leached through the grain to extract the sugars. The temperature of the added water is sufficiently high to denature the amylase enzyme. The run-off liquid is fundementally, sugar water. Dried, the resulting powder is non-diastatic malt powder, most often called Dry Malt Extract. Rehydrated, boiled with hops (or other additives), inoculated with yeast and left to ferment the result is beer.


Some manufacturers evaporate approximately 85% of the water, resulting in a thick, non-diastatic syrup. Most of the syrup winds up ultimately as beer, but a small portion is sold for baking, or other food preparations, to add its distinctive flavor and sweetness. This is usually labeled simply Malt Syrup.


However, if the process is interrupted, after the conversion, and the sugar extraction is made with cooler water that does not denature the amylase enzyme, when dried it still contains the active enzyme. This is Diastatic Malt Powder, and is usually labeled as such. Most manufacturers don't make non-diastitic malt; the interrupted process yields lower volume, and the market is small. I don't think diastatc malt sugar solution is sold in liquid or syrup form.I suspect this is so because the active enzymes would continue to process any unconverted starch molecules, and modify the product, perhaps disasterously.


Incidentally, brewers have a different vocabulary entirely for the same process and products, the leaching is called sparging, and the resulting sugar water, wort. As to the amylase's survival, boiling the hopped wort insures not a single molecule survives. It's done its job, no brewer mourns its demise.


King Arthur Flour--they have an online store--sells diastatic malt flour (powder). It seems a bit pricey, especially with S&H, but one only uses a small amount (1/2 to 1 tsp. per 3 cups of flour), and isn't appropriate for all doughs, so it lasts a long time.


It's not needed in most commercial flours. Wheat contains small amounts of amylase naturally, and millers add amylase (usually derived from a fungas, not barley) to flour to insure there is a sufficient amount to convert some starch molecules in flour to sugar to feed the yeast, and aid in browning. However, adding it to lean doughs will aid oven spring, and darker crust color.


David G


 

paulm's picture
paulm

At the risk of starting a whole new string of comments, I have a question about using Barley Malt syrup in place of diastatic malt powder.  I purchased a jar by Eden Organic of Barley Malt (Traditional Malt Syrup).  It's only ingredient is organic sprouted barley.  It says on the label that "Sprouting creates the enzymes that convert starch to sugar.  Evaporator concentrated to a rich syrup".  It also needs to be refrigerated after opening.  Would the evaporator be heating the enzymes too hot thereby killing them?


Thanks


Paul

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost
davidg618's picture
davidg618

...an answer to Paul's question.


David G

davidg618's picture
davidg618

Paul,


I use Eden Malt Syrup when I make bagels in the water bath. I've always assumed its non-diastatic for the reasons I suggested about the making of malt syrup. Today I found this website: http://www.edenfoods.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=104050


Eden Organic Malt Syrup is, from the manufacturer's mouth, non-diastatic.


Your right that their process denatures the enzymes, exactly where or when, during mashing or evaporation isn't clear.


I have been told by British homebrewers that Diastatic Malt syrup is available in the UK, and used by homebrewers, but in nearly twenty years brewing beer, I've never seen it in USA homebrew shops. Neither do USA published popular "how to brew" books mention it. Nonetheless, I did corroborate my British friends' comment. Here is DiaMalt's website. It specifically states they control the evaporation temperatures to preserve the enzyme's conversion power.


http://www.diamalt.co.uk/diastatic.htm


It may be available somewhere in the USA, but I can't find it so far. I haven't searched their website exhaustively.


David G


 


 

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

Available at nybakers.com


http://nybakers.com/toppings.html

davidg618's picture
davidg618

I've been thinking about the product the nybakers sell. I don't doubt it contains active enzymes, but I wonder how they get there.


Roasting malted barley denatures the amylase enzyme. That's why, when mashing cara pils, crystal, chocolate, or black malts you have to include pale malt, or its equivalent, in the grain mix. All of these specialty malts mentioned have been kilned at high temperatures which destroys most or all of their enzymes. The pale malt, rich in amylase, provides what is needed to convert the specialty grains starch as well as its own.


The NY Baker's description emphasizes "In addition, the malts used for liquid extract have been roasted, which can impart deeper flavor". That claim raised my suspicions.I've tried to find, via Internet searches, other sources for or the manufacturer of CMJ Diatatic Malt Syrup with no success. Do you have any other information?


 

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

For what it's worth, AB Mauri Fleischman also manufactures/distributes a line of ingredients for bakers. They also have an extensive line of malt products, including diastatic malt syrup. Since NYB apparently uses them as the source for his diastatic malt powder, they could easily choose Mauri for the syrup, probably.


But whatever...

davidg618's picture
davidg618

I found the AB Mauri Fleischman stuff yesterday, but it offers even less information than NYB. I'm just trying to satisfy my curiosity, and resolve conflicts in information I've used for nearly twenty years brewing, with information I find in this bread baking world.


David G

Katie123's picture
Katie123

I have a bag of barley malt sweetner. I would like to make bagels. Is it feasible to add a little water to some of the powder and use it as a syrup? I am trying to avoid a long drive to Whole Foods for the malt syrup.

davidg618's picture
davidg618

whether its diastatic or non-diastatic malt powder, boiling it will render it non-diastatic. I'm assuming you want to use it for the water bath for your bagels.


David G

Katie123's picture
Katie123

Yes to the water bath but my recipe also calls for a couple of teaspoons in the dough. This is my first time making bagels.

davidg618's picture
davidg618

If it's not marked diastatic, it probably is non-diastatic. In your dough it will add a bit of sweetness, and help with a deep crust color. If it's diasatic it will also aid yeast growth.


There are very long threads on TFL that discuss both forms of malted barley ad nauseum, although reading all the above should satisfy. If you're interested in more search "Barley Malt" in the search engine attached.


David G

polo's picture
polo

If you have honey at home you can use that in your dough. I've been making bagles using honey instead of malt syrup and it works fine. Use the same amount of honey as you would malt syrup.


 


polo

Katie123's picture
Katie123

Thankyou for the helpful replies. I'll try the malt powder in the water bath and the honey in the dough. They should be good!

polo's picture
polo

..........How did the bagels turn out? Good, I hope.

Katie123's picture
Katie123

I promised to make them with a friend and we've had trouble scheduling a day. My experiment trying to turn the powder into syrup didn't work, but it was interesting.


I plan on making the bagels this week (by myself if I have to) and will post back. Thanks for asking!


 


 


 

Katie123's picture
Katie123

I made my first bagels today and they turned out very well. I wound up making a trip to Whole Foods to purchase the malted barley syrup afterall, just so I could follow the recipe exactly. My toppings were onion, poppy seed, and sesame seed. I am so glad I found this site as it has such a wealth of information!

ww's picture
ww

Dear David G or anyone else who cares to chime in,

I am keen to buy some malt grains from a homebrewer's shop to make my own diastatic malt powder. last night, however, i read in hamelman (sorry, forgot to note page) that the malt grains used in beer brewing may be husked, in which case, would not be suitable for use in making DMP. So my question is are these malt grains husked or unhusked? And, at the risk of souding really stupid, if, as i understand it, the malt grains are germinated grains that have been dried, could they have been germinated still husked???

 

highoctane's picture
highoctane

Most malt is husked. Some malts are dehusked but that is to avoid bitterness at higher roasting temperatures...so you wouldn't be able to use those malts anyway. I don't see why the husks are a problem. They may add a bit of taste but I don't see them being a deal breaker. Besides, buying a 500g or Kg bag of a pale base malt (grains not extract) is cheap. I say just go for it and see what happens.

davidg618's picture
davidg618

I concur with highoctane: its worth a try. 2-row of 6-row malted barley Pale Malt is loaded with alpha and beta-amylase. You can buy it crushed or uncrushed (most homebrew shops will crush it for you as you watch). When you get it home, sift it through a fine mesh strainer. This will separate out the cracked husks (and any big pieces of endosperm etc).  If you grind your own flour you already have all the tools you need for grinding and sifting. A pound of crushed pale malt costs around $1.00.

As for germinating husked barley: think about it. In nature nearly all seeds germinate in their husks. The malting process is deceptively simple--you could do it at home if you have a source of fresh barley grain. Husked barley grain is soaked in warm water, spread, and kept moist until it germinates; i.e., the first tiny cotyledon leaves appear. Then the barley is spread to dry in a warm atmosphere. The germinated barley is turned frequently to insure even drying, and, I suspect, to prevent molds from forming. Specialty malts, e.g., crystal, cara-pils, chocolate, and black patent malts are then roasted in kilns at specific temperatures. Because of the roasting temperatures the amylase in these speciality malts is denatured.

Commercial malting is/was done in large two floored buildings; the sprouted grains were spread on the upper floor which was heated from below. Turning was originally done by hand. Scotch Whiskey and Irish Wiskey are made from malted barley heated with peat fires whose smoke gives the final products much of their flavor.

 I've read, some modern malting is done in rotating cylindrical tanks, but I've never found a detailed description, nor pictures. There are many descriptions and pictures of modern applications of the older process on the Internet.

David G

 

ww's picture
ww

dear david and highoctane,

if you say husked grains are ok, i'll go ahead and buy it!

David: I would have germinated my own grains except i cant find whole barley grains - or maybe i'm not looking in the right places.

Will keep you posted. The upside of all this is that ive learnt more about beer brewing than i cared to know :)) now i'm curious about all these 'artisan' beers...

 

davidg618's picture
davidg618

Careful! Homebrewing can become as obsessive as bread baking ;-)

David G

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

ww,

When I first tried sprouting barley I had the husked variety.  It didn't work... I realized I need the husk intact.

I found what I needed at a local grocery store in the seed sprouting section - not the grain section.  The bag I purchased held about a cup or 2 of barley and that amount makes more than I would ever use in a years worth of baking.  In fact I just finished making a batch today and used about 1/2 to a cups worth of  unhusked barley.  The amount I got will last about a year. 

I use about a teaspoon per loaf of bread when I do use it but I don't use it often because I use whole grains when I bake.  I have a few recipes out of Dan Leopard's book that call for it though so I like having it on hand and it is fun to make.  :-)

Take Care,

Janet

I

Luber's picture
Luber

Hi guys - this has been discussed a lot here, Bob's Red Mill malted barley flour wil do the trick.

See this thread: http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/6212/how-do-i-tell-if-my-malt-syrup-diastatic

(I sold all the extra I had, but they're still selling it at Amazon and Barry Farms cheaper than KA)

ww's picture
ww

Dear all,

this has taken a while but i finally bought the barley, had them grind it up (unfortunately their grinder wasn't very powerful), then tried to sift it. I've included the photos, can you guys tell me if the sifted product is fine enough to use? i doubt so because i still see bits and bobs. Also, is there anything i can do with the leftovers? i think had the grinder been finer, i would have gotten more out of it, but short of that what can i do with the husks and what are those round white bits?

sifted

leftover

thanks all!