Gingerbread Cookie Saison with Vanilla

It’s the time of year for festive treats and holiday cookies. So we’re making a delicious cookie saison. It’s slightly spiced and subtly sweet. Easy to brew and can be ready in a little as a week. there are a lot of ingredients in gingerbread that would complement a Saison. Were going to be layering ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, molasses, and vanilla. For this reason to live up to its peppery name well also enhance the flavors with the hops.

If you like ginger we are sure you will enjoy our How to Make Homemade Ginger Beer.

A glass of ginger saison beer with a ginger root.
Credit: https://silva-brewing.square.site/product/mj-s-spicy-ginger-6-1-ginger-saison-32oz-crowler/116

The Grain Bill

For this recipe, we’re making a 5-gallon batch using the brew in a bag method. We heat up 6 gallons of water to 157 F. For the grains we need:

  • 75% Belgian Pale Malt
  • 8.2% Biscuit Malt
  • 4.2% Caravienne
  • 4.2% Flaked Wheat
  • 4.2% Brown sugar at the end of boil
  • 4.2% Molassas at the end of boil

We plan to mash at 151 F for 45 minutes.

After 45 minutes we pull out the grain bag and bring wort to boil for 30 minutes. Once the boil started we add 2 oz of Hallertau Mittelfruh hops. At 15 minute mark, we add a Whirfloc tablet for clarity and a wort chiller for cooling.

The additional spices

A bowl of grounded ginger with star anise, cinnamon sticks, nutmeg, almonds and other spices.
Credit: https://www.123rf.com/photo_33780576_homemade-gingerbread-spice-spices-and-herbs.html

At the end of 30 minutes boil, we turn off the heat. At this point we will add gingerbread additions starting with spices:

  • 1/2 Tbsp Ginger
  • 1/2 Tbsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Tbsp Nutmeg
  • 4 oz Molassas
  • 4 oz Brown Sugar

We will chill down the wort to 80 F. For yeast, we are using While Labs Belgian Saison WLP 568. We pitch the yeast and give it a good shake to incorporate. Saison yeast can be a little sensitive to pressure. That means by putting an airlock you can create too much pressure on the yeast. Since this is Belgian yeast it’s recommended to ferment this beer at warmer temperatures to promote esters and phenols that give us fruity and spicy notes. We plan to ferment at 78 F for 3 to 4 days.

After 4 days we transferred the beer into a purged keg with CO2. We added 1 oz of Vanilla Extract as our final ingredient. After a few days, it was ready to drink. The beer has a beautiful rich golden color. While very dark the molasses didn’t have a huge impact on the color. This is easy to drink. Not overly sweet and on the dry side. the ginger adds a peppery note while the nutmeg adds a nutty sweet spiciness. It has a slightly creamy mouthfeel but the body isn’t too thick. A wonderful beer. Cheers.

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