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malt-msg – 3/26/06


Period use of malted grains. Malt is grain softened by steeping in water and then allowed to germinate. Modern sources.


NOTE: See also the files: rice-msg, grains-msg, beer-msg, beverages-msg, brewing-msg,  bread-msg, Ancent-Grains-art, leavening-msg, Ale-a-Beer-lnks.





This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.


This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org


I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were removed to save space and remove clutter.


The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given by the individual authors.


Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear at this time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give credit to the originator(s).


Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org



Date: Fri, 10 Dec 1999 11:43:46 -0500

From: Christine A Seelye-King <mermayde  at juno.com>

Subject: SC - Malt Powder


It is my understanding that Malt is from toasted barley, hence, barley

malt.  Or perhaps the term barley malt just specifies that it is barley

and not wheat malt.  Where is Waverly Root?  (leaving the room briefly

and consulting the reference section) Ok, nothing in 'FOOD', but here is

the OED listing.


Malt [Com. Teut.:OE 'mealt':-OTeut.*'maltos-'neut.;f. the root of

Melt,Smelt vbs] 1.Barley or other grain prepared for brewing or

distilling by steeping, germinating, and kiln-drying, or by

gelatinization, etc.

2.transf. Used for: Malt liquor (slang or colloq.) 1718

I. 'Extract of m.', a preparation of m. used as food for invalids.

Provb. 'The m. is above the meal', said the person under the influence of


        attrib. and Comb., as m.-spirits; m-cellar, m-meal, etc.;

m.extract, a saccharine and mucilaginous substance obtained from wort;

also='extract of m.;

- -floor, (a) a floor on which the malt is spread to germinate; (b) a

perforated floor in the malt-kiln, through which heat ascends from a

furnace below to dry the barley laid upon it;

- -kiln, a kiln in which the m. is dried after steeping and couching;

m.liquor, liquor made from m. by fermentation, as ale, beer, stout, etc.;

- -sugar = Maltose; -tax, a tax on m., now replaced by the beer-duty;

m.vinegar, vinegar made from the fermentation of m.


Malt , v., 1440. 1. trans. To convert (grain) into malt. Also absol.

b. intr. To admit of being malted 1766.

2. transf. (pass. and intr.) Of seeds: To come to the condition of malt

owing to germination being checked by drought 1733.

3. trans. To make (liquor) with malt 1605.

4. intr. To drink malt liquor (vulgar) 1813.

        3. A man of worship, whose beere was better hopped than maulted CAMDEN.


So, it seems that it can be any grain, but most likely barley and wheat.





Date: Fri, 10 Dec 1999 11:44:30 -0600

From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD  at Health.State.OK.US>

Subject: RE: SC - Malted Milk


> > "Nestle Carnation Malted Milk, original flavor" (there's also

> > chocolate)

> > This is absolutely the stuff the old soda jerks used. Carnation was

> > a major supplier of soda fountains back in the *olde* days.

> > Anahita

> >

>       But, as the label says, this is "malted milk", ergo, milk with malt

> powder added to it.  Right?

>       Christianna


Right.  It is malt powder cut with powdered milk and wheat flour (according

to one label) to produce measurable amounts without making the malt flavor

overpowering.  It is the stuff used in malts, sodas and other dishes where

you want a hint of malt.


Malt powder and malt syrup tend to be used in making commercial quantities

or where you want a strong malt flavor.


Malted milk and malt powder serve similar purposes, but have different



Diatasic malt is a specialized malt exceptionally high in the enzyme diatase

to improve fermentation.  The primary use I know of is in commercial






Date: Sat, 11 Dec 1999 09:42:25 -0500From: Philip & Susan Troy <troy  at asan.com>Subject: Re: SC - maltStefan li Rous wrote:> Was malt known in period? Perhaps under a different name> such as sprouted, browned wheat? :-) I think I've seen mention of malt> in nursery rhymes but those aren't necessarily period. The only place> I can remember malt is in malted milk. Adamantius' comment makes me> wonder if it might have been used in late-period brewing but I have> no idea if it was.There _are_ some medieval culinary recipes that call for wort(essentially the malt-infused solution fermented to make ale), as acooking medium, the way you might simmer in wine, but I'm not aware ofany use of malt extract by brewers until the early 20th century or so.Malt, BTW, can be almost any grain, and is generally the predominant[cheap] grain in a given area, but in our Anglo-centric SCA thisgenerally refers to barley unless specified otherwise. Also, for therecord, not all malt in period is toasted. It is dried in a sort ofkiln, but in Markham's instructions for malting there's no toasting atall beyond a brief heating (with lots of attention, turning, etc.) tostop the plant embryos from continuing to grow and to dry the malt.Excessive toasting, of course, will limit the diastolic enzyme activity(well, all right, as long as I'm being jargonistic I'll say zymurgy.Neener Neener.) Anyway, Markham's early seventeenth-century English maltis what is today known as "white malt", to distinguish it from palemalt, which is actually a light brown and tends to produce an amber ale.Even white malt, still occasionally used in England today, can produce apale-ish amber ale.> What is the differance between "Spray-dried malt extract and powdered> malt? Is the extract more concentrated? They sure sound similar.Depends on what you mean by powdered malt. Malt (as in malted barley orother grain) can certainly be ground to a fine powder, but it'sgenerally regarded as a Bad Thing for brewing with because it tends toproduce cloudy brews. Spray-dried malt extract is made the same waypowdered milk is, by spraying malt syrup or wort into a freeze-dryingvacuum chamber. Powdered malt extract, made this way, would be the samething, but powdered _malt_ could refer to what is essentially used bybakers to make malted waffles and bread and such: malt flour. Maltextract is, in theory, pretty much pure maltose, while ground maltcontains proteins, starches, insoluble fiber, etc., in addition to some

maltose.Now, malt extract has been known since the nineteenth century (with thefirst of the real experiments into "enriched" foods) as a fairlyhealthful food/supplement, and it found its way into a number of foodsas a vaguely medicinal additive. There's a reason why the first placesto serve these milk drinks, including malted milk and the early tonicdiluted with two-cents-plain and known today as Coca-Cola, weredrugstores. I think the modern formula for making Carnation malted milkmix, with its dried milk and wheat flour, has more to do with making itrich and thick than with the fact that malt contains a grain element.Adamantius


Date: Sat, 11 Dec 1999 00:25:48 -0600From: "Decker, Terry D." <TerryD  at Health.State.OK.US>Subject: RE: SC - malt

> Was malt known in period? Perhaps under a different name> such as sprouted, browned wheat? :-) I think I've seen mention of malt> in nursery rhymes but those aren't necessarily period. The only place> I can remember malt is in malted milk. Adamantius' comment makes me> wonder if it might have been used in late-period brewing but I have> no idea if it was.> --> Lord Stefan li Rous    Barony of Bryn Gwlad   Kingdom of Ansteorra> Mark S. Harris             Austin, Texas           stefan  at texas.netMalt was definitely known in period.  Malted barley was a major product inthe Hanseatic League trade.  I believe you will also find malted grain beingused in Assyrian and Egyptian brewing.Malting increases the enzymes, particularly diatase, in the grain whichconvert starch to sugar and enhances fermentation processes such as brewingand baking.If you look at the ingredient labels, you'll find malt in a lot of oddplaces, primarily as a flavoring agent.Bear


Date: Sat, 11 Dec 1999 01:38:43 -0600From: Magdalena <magdlena  at earthlink.net>Subject: Re: SC - malt> Was malt known in period? Perhaps under a different name> such as sprouted, browned wheat? :-)Malt was known as ...  malt.  or perhaps mault, or malte, or some german word Idon't remember.  ;>  Where you have beer/ale brewing, you have malt. In fact, Idon't know if you can make beer without malt.  I don't think so.  You can makebarley stuff, but it isn't beer/ale.  (Beer has hops, ale does not, for a moreor less period definition.)  In period, people who knew how to malt were paidmore than those who did not.  I haven't personally seen any of the info on theearly Egyptian brewers, but hearsay says that there were maltinginstructions/pictures.- -Magdalena


Date: Mon, 13 Dec 1999 18:15:05 EST

From: LrdRas  at aol.com

Subject: Re: SC - malt


magdlena  at earthlink.net writes:

<< Malt was known as ...  malt.  or perhaps mault, or malte, or some german

word I don't remember.  ;>  >>


[from: Miriam-Webster]

malt [1] (noun)


[Middle English, from Old English mealt; akin to Old High German malz malt,

Old English meltan to melt]


First appeared before 12th Century


1 : grain (as barley) softened by steeping in water, allowed to germinate,

and used esp. in brewing and distilling





Date: Mon, 13 Dec 1999 19:33:00 -0500

From: Nick Sasso <grizly  at mindspring.com>

Subject: Re: SC - malt


> Was malt known in period? Perhaps under a different name

> such as sprouted, browned wheat? :-) I think I've seen mention of malt

> in nursery rhymes but those aren't necessarily period. The only place I can

> remember malt is in malted milk. Adamantius' comment makes me  wonder if it

> might have been used in late-period brewing but I have

> no idea if it was.


Malted wheat and oats were used in monastic breweries since 14th

century, according to inventories.  Also, the German purity laws seem to

suggest something was being malted (mostly wheat) other than barley that

had to be outlawed.


niccolo difrancseco



Date: Mon, 13 Dec 1999 19:48:53 -0500

From: "Richard Kappler" <rkappler  at home.com>

Subject: RE: SC - malt


Malt has been used back to Sumerian times and prolly before.  It is

impossible to make beer or ale without it.  Now I'm not gonna get into the

terminology/semantics battle currently underway, but the original question

can be answered two ways.  Was malt used in period?  Yes, absolutely,

regardless of what you construe period to be, it was, and long before.  Was

the term malt used in period?  Dunno.  I defer to Miriam.


Regards, Puck



Date: Wed, 10 Nov 2004 23:39:13 -0500

From: "grizly" <grizly at mindspring.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] Beverages

To: "Bill Fisher" <liamfisher at gmail.com>, "Cooks within the SCA"

        <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>


> On Wed, 10 Nov 2004 12:11:16 -0800 (PST), Chris Stanifer

> <jugglethis at yahoo.com> wrote:


>> Does anyone have a reference for the use of Malt Syrup as a  beverage???

>> It seems to me that it may have occurred to someone, somewhere along the way,

>> to water down malt syrup to use as a sweet beverage, which, having made it

>> myself from time to time, is very tasty.


>> Perhaps medieval brewers didn't reduce their malt to syrup?  Perhaps

>> they didn't make their malt syrup seperate from the brewing process??  Not

>> sure.... anyone?

>> William de Grandfort


Historical references suggest that malt syrup was not in use until the late

1700's by the British Royal Navy to brew beer on voyages . . . extending the

life of their alcohol.  No pasteurization yet, so you got malt vinegar from

beer/ale way too quickly.  I can get the book title having the reference, if

someone needs it.  Something like "History of Brewing in England from 600 to

1800" . . . . with three paragraphs or so (hyperbole) on pre-1700 items.


maestro niccolo difrancesco



Date: Sun, 5 Jun 2005 20:27:51 -0500

From: "Terry Decker" <t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] malt

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>


No, I'm talking about a recipe that calls for malt (probably barley malt,

but not necessarily) in addition to the leavening.  By itself, malt does not

leaven, but it does provide a serious boost for the leavening.  Modernly

bakers tend to use diamalt (malt extract with diatase) to improve the bread.

If you use a teaspoon or two of malt, malt extract, or diamalt to a pound or

two of dough, it will boost the yeast.  If you add a quarter cup or so, it

will act as a sweetner.




> Bear, I think Lyse meant using the barley malt as a sweetener. You are

> talking about ale barm as a leavening agent, right? Not as a sweetener.


> Stefan


>> The pre-1600 recipes and descriptions I've seen don't mention barley malt,

>> but it would probably have been in the ale barm for those breads that were

>> not leavened with sourdough.  The first mention I can remember for malt

>> in bread is Markham in the early 17th Century.


>> Bear


>>> Would barley malt have been used instead or sugar?

>>> Lys


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
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Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org