After the horror that was our last brew day, We've been a little skittish about brewing again. But then Twitter told me about a home-brew contest we just had to enter: Weird Ingredient Beer.
This was right up our alley, so my husband and I started scheming. He remembered hearing about a flour that was made out of crickets, and we knew we had a winner.
Crickets and cricket flour are known to have a roasty, nutty flavor, so we knew that would be a great fit for a beer. We ordered both cricket flour and whole crickets just in case (man, I love Amazon!)
So many of our non-craft brew drinking friends think all craft beer is weird, but we just upped the ante!
We decided on a basic porter recipe with biscuit malt and added whole crickets and cricket flour as adjuncts.
We all know something is bound to go wrong for us smaller scale homebrewers, and this time we were lucky to only have a little bit of trouble with our thermometer. Otherwise, the process went smoothly.
Here's the recipe, just in case you need more crickets in your diet. If you don't, just leave out the crickets and this is a great go-to porter recipe.
Biscuits and Crickets Porter
1 lb Corsair Southern Biscuit
8 lb Two Row Pale
13 oz Chocolate Wheat
8 oz 80 L Crystal
5 oz Carapils
5 oz Coffee Malt
5 oz Flaked Barley
.5 oz Columbus
.25 oz Cascade
.25 oz German Hallertau
1/2 tsp Irish Moss
4 oz Cricket flour with Cocoa
8 oz Whole Crickets
S-04 dry yeast
Original Gravity: 1.055
Final Gravity: 1.012
Recipe Type: all grain
Yield: 5 gallons
Mash: 153 degrees for 60 minutes. 5.5 gallons strike water at 167 degrees.
Sparge: 4 gallons, single infusion for 30 minutes at 168 degrees.
Adjunct additions: Whole crickets -- 5 minutes; Cricket flour with cocoa -- 5 minutes; Irish moss -- 15 minutes
Hop Additions: Columbus -- 60 minutes; Cascade -- 15 minutes; German Hallertau -- 5 minutes
Fermentation: 73 degrees for 5 days.
Tasting Notes: Head retention not great (probably because of high protein/high fat content of crickets.) S-04 yeast gives an ester-y taste, Biscuit malt shines through with bready hints of chocolate. Nutty, slightly tangy flavor imparted by crickets.