Malt -

grain in which Diastase has been developed by allowing it to sprout. It is used in large quantities in the manufacture of beer, whisky, malt extract, etc. The grain is first steeped in tubs of water for from forty-eight to seventy-two hours until it starts to germinate and is then spread on floors in a layer from eight to twelve inches deep, being turned over every twenty-four hours during the four days of the process in order to prevent "heating" and to ensure even growth. It is next kiln-dried and screened to remove the sprouts and is then ready for the market. When made by the "drum" system, the desired uniformity is even more thoroughly assured by putting the steeped grain in large revolving drums which keep it constantly moving as it grows.

Barley is the grain chiefly malted, but rye, oats, etc., are also so treated in considerable quantities.

Caramel malt is that roasted especially dark.

The great Commercial value of the Diastase thus developed is its property, in solution under high temperature, of transforming starch, first into dextrin and then into a fermentable sugar. One part is capable of converting 2,000 parts of starch. Malted Barley or other grain contains only 1/800 part of the substance, yet this is sufficient to convert the starch of cereals of twenty times the bulk of the malt, as well as that of the malt, into fermentable sugar. The grinding of the grain in the manufacture of beer, whisky, etc., is to bring the Diastase more readily into contact with each minute particle of starch content.

The Commercial Diastase employed in baking and for some other purposes, instead of the malted grain itself, is a hard, white, solid substance obtained by digesting the germinated grain in a mixture of three parts of water and one part of alcohol, then pressing and filtering.

Arround Malt in The Grocer's Encyclopedia

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