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Cold soak of cooked wheat?


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#1 ElrikEriksson

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 12:24 AM

I'll describe where I'm at. To hydrate my hard wheat I put it in scalding hot water and keep it warm for 90 minutes before cranking up the heat and maintaining a gentle simmer until the grains no longer have a dry spot inside and they are on the verge of bursting. That's 20 to 30 minutes of simmering for me. I then drain and rinse it, pour it on a towel, shovel it into the jars, PC and inoculate when cooled.

On some cultures they stall for several days when trying to colonize the top surface of the grain, almost like they are inhibited by lowered humidity. My GE shouldn't be that high. On some jars they just don't colonize the jar as fast as I know they are theoretically capable.

Now a clue. When I shoot in the inoculum if I leave it pooled on the bottom those grains will absorb it within half a day and turn a shade lighter in color. My grains cooked to near bursting are still thirsty. I think this is holding back growth.

My question is this: has anyone tried soaking fully cooked grain in cold water for some period to further hydrate it before loading into jars?

If so, how long did you gainfully soak, and how could you tell when soaking longer would be bad?

 

If nothing else I could just cold soak until they turn the color of the grains at the bottom of the LI injected jars, but a guy can always hope for a sneak preview :wink:


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#2 MsBehavin420

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 07:51 AM

I have seen some teks that say to hydrate/soak over night before cooking.
i have tried both ways with popcorn and pf classics strain, but i get bad results (apparently i have a difficult strain)

#3 Dabluebonic

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 09:14 AM

Are you using a MS or an isolated strain? It may be the reason for your jars colonizing at different rates. I used a MS syringe 2 weeks ago on some wbs, and evey jar is growing at different speeds. From 20% to 100% right now. I think im gonna try my luck at a no soak tek next time. Maybe you too Elrik should give it a go and take the guess work out.

Edited by Dabluebonic, 29 November 2019 - 09:15 AM.


#4 ElrikEriksson

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 12:30 PM

Yeah, that is a fair point. Right now I have MS, MS mycelium water, and untested semi-isolates going so that could explain some going slow, I did account for that and I'm not reading too much into a few jars going slowly. But it wouldn't explain the inhibition of surface colonization and it could partly explain why some groups are going slow.

Others are just going slow because of MS, like I have two identical jars of KSSS with one at 40% and one at 80% :laugh:



#5 happy4nic8r

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 02:09 PM

I haven't had the best luck with grains, but have tried them quite a few times with all sorts of different combinations and techniques.

 

I found the best route for me was to soak the grains *(with WBS you take out the floating sunflower seeds during this soak), overnight, or a few days in some cases if I forgot.

Then I would load the wet grains into the jars and either add more water, or just like they were when fully soaked, and pressure cook them same as pf tek brf and verm jars.

 

The lids were varied, but with a sterile air booth I could just take the lids off and put agar wedges in or liquid culture mycelium, or shoot ms syringes into the grains. Whatever I had and was going to work with. Then put lids with tyvek breathers, or micropore tape, some form of vents to get fae (fresh air exchange). 

 

As far as how long it takes, it really depends on a number of factors, temp, what kind and amount of inoculant, what strain (some are quicker than others), and certainly what % moisture you end up with after all the sterilization etc. I've had some that jumped and ran, some that sat for what seemed like years and then slowly started and crept along. As long as there's no contamination, there shouldn't be a problem with some patience lessons. If you are in a hurry, then you should try a different hobby. This one is all about the wait.



#6 coorsmikey

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Posted 29 November 2019 - 05:41 PM

Do you shake the jars of grain after PCing? I don't hydrate my grain first like described. I do no prep 2/3 part water to 1 part grain all in the jar and into the PC. Once done in the PC, as soon as its safe to open but still very hot. I take the jars out with oven mitts and shake them. The grains at the bottom of the jars are far more hydrated than the top. Shaking them redistributes the moisture more evenly. By the time they are cooled the are all pretty consistent from the top to the bottom. If I don't do the shake while hot then I end up with jars like described. Very dry on top and clumpy bursted kernels on the bottom. I have a feeling that even though you pre-hydrate yours that gravity and heat in the PC may be doing the same to your jars. It's a PITA to open the PC after the pressure has dropped to a safe level but still hot, especially when you just want to leave the jars to cool overnight but I feel its so worth in the end to have perfect jars.


Edited by coorsmikey, 29 November 2019 - 06:02 PM.


#7 ElrikEriksson

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 12:40 AM

Oh, there is no visible inconsistency in grain hydration after PCing. All the grains from top to bottom look the same, its only if I inject several mls of liquid and let it settle that the grains on the bottom plump up more and get lighter after absorbing that liquid. That's what gave me the idea of cold soaking after cooking, the fact that those grains freely were absorbing more liquid at 22° and not bursting.

I think that these grains are still 'thirsty' is making the headspace be below 90% RH and inhibiting that final step in colonization. I just shook two 99% colonized jars just to force them to get the last grains because they had barely advanced in three days.

 

It seems I'll just have to try it and see what happens. If the worst happens I will have only lost 600 grams of grain :laugh:



#8 TVCasualty

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 11:04 AM

I'll describe where I'm at. To hydrate my hard wheat I put it in scalding hot water and keep it warm for 90 minutes before cranking up the heat and maintaining a gentle simmer until the grains no longer have a dry spot inside and they are on the verge of bursting.

 

The wide variation in grain prep methods is kind of interesting.

 

I really love popcorn for spawn and it took me a while to get it dialed in (meaning works every time) and for me that meant ensuring that the inner core of the popcorn was still mostly dry/uncooked.

 

That was the only way I was able to ensure no or very little bursting (and easier shaking when using jars), and excess moisture is not a problem since the dry cores will wick it up though I usually still toss some verm in anyway, mostly out of habit I guess since I've always done it that way with any grain, though it's been a while since I've used anything besides popcorn. It's far easier to shake up popcorn jars when over-incubated than jars grown with smaller grains, though using bags makes that moot. Another advantage to this with popcorn is it minimizes the production of that dreaded slime that they produce when overcooked to bursting or when using cracked corn.

 

 

 

I figure that the mycelium won't have penetrated very far into the grain before it's time to spawn it after inoculating it (which for me is usually three days, but the same is mostly-true even if it's seven), so IMO it doesn't matter if the core is hydrated at that stage as the mycelium will be largely confined to the outer surface of the grain and just barely under it. Or at least it doesn't look like it's penetrated very far by then when I've cut open colonized kernels left over from a spawn run.

 

Once spawned, the kernels will continue to draw in moisture from the substrate and the core will get sufficient hydration to be consumed during the incubation and fruiting stages. This all may only be applicable to popcorn since it's worked so well for me so consistently that I haven't bothered with any other grain for spawn in many years. It's probably not practical for smaller grains like wheat and especially really small grains like millet.


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#9 ElrikEriksson

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Posted 30 November 2019 - 01:24 PM

Thats an interesting perspective on popcorn.

I too didn't have an easy time hydrating popcorn or feed corn fully, but your right, if there is full surface colonization the core should remain resistant to contams while the myc hydrates it by its own mechanisms.

I'll probably try it next time I run out of wheat. I always have popcorn and brown rice, and of those two- popcorn! :laugh:



#10 ElrikEriksson

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 07:49 AM

I did an experiment.

480g hard red spring wheat was rinsed and placed in 3,5 cups 25% decaf coffee +1g gypsum, brought to a light boil and heated on low for it to slowly cool to 50°C in 90 minutes, this was then returned to a boil and gently simmered for 20 minutes until a few grains burst. Wheat was drained, rinsed, poured onto a towel, and the weighed: 928g. Wheat then covered with 4 cups cool water and let stand for 3 hours. Wheat drained, poured onto a towel, and weighed: 969g.

An extra 9% of water was absorbed beyond what would have been gained without the cold soak. No additional grains burst as a result of the cold soak.

It seems a viable optimization step if the grain is coming out a bit dry.



#11 roc

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 10:47 AM

Thats an interesting perspective on popcorn.

I too didn't have an easy time hydrating popcorn or feed corn fully, but your right, if there is full surface colonization the core should remain resistant to contams while the myc hydrates it by its own mechanisms.

I'll probably try it next time I run out of wheat. I always have popcorn and brown rice, and of those two- popcorn! :laugh:

I've found that I like a 50/50 mix of popcorn and WBS

Been using it for 10+ years and prep the two separate and then mix at the point of loading jars.

I get a faster start and spread with the large kernel size of the popcorn and the gaps.

No problems with clumping of the WBS and shaking is easier.

Gain in spawning is more inoculation points with the WBS than straight popcorn nad again faster colonization of the sub.

 

CHEAP!


Edited by roc, 01 December 2019 - 10:47 AM.

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#12 Ronald Ray Gun

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 12:48 PM

Thats an interesting perspective on popcorn.
I too didn't have an easy time hydrating popcorn or feed corn fully, but your right, if there is full surface colonization the core should remain resistant to contams while the myc hydrates it by its own mechanisms.
I'll probably try it next time I run out of wheat. I always have popcorn and brown rice, and of those two- popcorn! :laugh:

I've found that I like a 50/50 mix of popcorn and WBS
Been using it for 10+ years and prep the two separate and then mix at the point of loading jars.
I get a faster start and spread with the large kernel size of the popcorn and the gaps.
No problems with clumping of the WBS and shaking is easier.
Gain in spawning is more inoculation points with the WBS than straight popcorn nad again faster colonization of the sub.

CHEAP!

50/50 volume or weight?

#13 roc

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Posted 01 December 2019 - 05:40 PM

 

 

Thats an interesting perspective on popcorn.
I too didn't have an easy time hydrating popcorn or feed corn fully, but your right, if there is full surface colonization the core should remain resistant to contams while the myc hydrates it by its own mechanisms.
I'll probably try it next time I run out of wheat. I always have popcorn and brown rice, and of those two- popcorn! :laugh:

I've found that I like a 50/50 mix of popcorn and WBS
Been using it for 10+ years and prep the two separate and then mix at the point of loading jars.
I get a faster start and spread with the large kernel size of the popcorn and the gaps.
No problems with clumping of the WBS and shaking is easier.
Gain in spawning is more inoculation points with the WBS than straight popcorn nad again faster colonization of the sub.

CHEAP!

50/50 volume or weight?

 

Volume

I just measure with a quart jar.


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