Guava Belgian Pale Ale

IMG_20160330_192621Tonight we’re brewing our third batch of this beer, a favorite recipe created and led by Cesar.

Brew Method: Extract
Boil Time: 60 min
Batch Size: 5 gallons

Original Gravity: 1.052
Final Gravity: 1.012
ABV: 5.25%

10 oz – Carapils
10 oz – Honey Malt

4 lb – Dry Malt Extract – Pilsen Light
1 lb – Dry Malt Extract – Wheat Breiss

1 oz – Belma Pellets
1 oz – Citra Pellets

1 oz – Bitter Orange Peel (dried)
1.5 g – Paradise Seeds
1 lb – Peeled Fresh Guava, in 1″ chunks
1 tsp – Irish Moss
2 lb – Frozen Guava Pulp (for secondary)

White Labs – Monastery Ale Yeast #WLP500


1. Steep grains @ 155-160 for 30 minutes in 3 gallons of water
2. Remove grains and add DME
3. Bring to boil and set timer for 60 minutes
4. With 15 minutes left, add irish moss and wort chiller
5. At 10 min, add fresh guava
6. At 7 min, add belma and citra hops
7. At 5 min, add seeds of paradise and orange peel
8. At 0 min, remove from heat and transfer wort to primary fermenter
9. Top up with water to 5 gallons.
10. Cool to pitching temp and add yeast
11. Ferment in primary for 7-14 days
12. Rack to secondary fermenter and add guava pulp
13. After 7-14 days, prime and bottle
14. Bottle condition 2-3 weeks and enjoy!


The easiest and most delicious bread recipe


This bread has accompanied many a brew club gathering. It’s simple to make and delicious every time, and it has beer in it!

Almost No-Knead Bread

Modified from Cook’s Illustrated 2008.

Makes 1 large round loaf


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon instant or rapid-rise yeast
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons water, room temperature (I usually end up using a little less, or a little more flour to get the right dough consistency)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons mild-flavored beer (Budweiser is fine and so is an IPA or pretty much anything)
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • Chopped herbs (optional)



1. Whisk flour, salt, and yeast together in large bowl (and herbs, if using). Mix water, lager, and vinegar together and add to the flour mixture. Using rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold mixture, scraping up dry flour from bottom of bowl until shaggy ball forms. If it’s really sticky, add a little more flour (otherwise it will be still delicious but kind of flat). Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for at least 8 hours or up to 18 hours (or if you’re in a rush, you can let it rise in the oven with the light on for about 4 hours and it’ll still be tasty. Just make sure the oven doesn’t get too hot – you might want to turn the light off after an hour or so depending on how hot your oven light is).

2. Line a large bowl (about the size of your dutch oven or a little smaller) with parchment paper. Transfer dough to lightly floured counter and knead 10 to 15 times (or knead in the bowl). Shape dough into ball and place it into the parchment-lined bowl. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until dough has doubled in size and does not readily spring back when poked with finger, about 2 hours.

3. About 30 min before the bread is done rising, put the empty dutch oven (lid on) into the oven and preheat to 500 degrees. When it’s preheated, turn the temp down to 425. Lightly flour top of dough and, using razor blade or sharp knife, make one or two slits along top of dough. Pick up the dough by lifting the parchment overhang and lower it into the Dutch oven. Put lid on and bake bread for 30 minutes.

4. Remove lid and continue to bake (still at 425) until loaf is deep brown and registers 210 degrees (15 minutes works for me, but it could be different with a different oven). Carefully remove bread from pot; transfer to wire rack and try to let cool for at least 15 minutes before cutting into loaf.



Behind the scenes: Harvard faculty search

Many of us in YCC work in academia and/or are on the hunt for jobs, and the selection process for these jobs can be mired in mystery. This article gives insight into the search for tenure-track faculty in science – what search committees are looking for, how they narrow down the huge pool of qualified candidates, and how they try to combat implicit biases against women and minorities in their application reviews. A great read that has sparked a lot of conversation in the scientific community!

Our faculty search so far


A traditional Korean culinary cornerstone, kimchi uses salt and other seasonings to preserve vegetable. The principals are similar to saurkraut, relying on wild lactic acid bacteria and salt for preservation, but the product is quite a bit different. The kimchi we made was napa cabbage seasoned with a variety of vegetables and heaps of sun-dried chili flakes.

Recipe  (Adapted from Maangchi)


  • 7 pounds napa cabbage
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 2 cups Korean radish, shredded
  • 1/4 cup carrot, shredded
  • 1/4 cup jicama, shredded
  • 8 green onions, chopped
  • 1 cup Asian chives, finely chopped

Seasoning paste

  • 2 tablespoons rice flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup good fish sauce or Korean soup soy sauce (“Three crabs” works well)
  • An unreasonable amount of garlic (about 1.5 bulbs), minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, minced
  • 2 teaspoons minced ginger
  • 2 cups Korean dried chili pepper flakes (do NOT substitute other types of chili flakes)


Time required: about 2 hours.


Chopping the cabbage

  1. First, chop cabbage into bite sized pieces, approximately 1 inch long and wide.
  2. Salt 7 pounds of cabbage with 1/2 cup kosher salt, and allow cabbage to sit in a bowl and wilt. Turn every 30 minutes, and allow it to wilt for 1 hour 15 minutes.
  3. While cabbage is wilting, prepare the radish, carrot, jicama, green onion, and Asian chives, then add to a bowl large enough to hold 7 pounds of chopped cabbage.


    Shredded and chopped vegetables

  4. Once all vegetables have been chopped, add 2 tablespoons of rice flour and 2 cups of water to a saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened (about 10 minutes) to make porridge
  5. Add brown sugar to the thickened porridge, allow to cool, then add your fish sauce (If you add the fish sauce while the porridge is still hot, your kitchen will smell like hot fish).


    It doesn’t look like much now…

  6. Add the minced garlic, onion, and ginger to the porridge.
  7. Combine porridge, 2 cups of chili flakes, and all vegetables except the salted napa cabbage to make kimchi paste.


    …but just wait!

  8. Once the chopped cabbage has finished wilting, rinse and drain about 3 times with cold water to remove any excess salt or dirt.
  9. Combine your chopped cabbage with your kimchi paste!


    We had to mix it in parts because we didn’t have a big enough container for it all.

  10. Once all the cabbage is coated in kimchi paste, pack it into a container and allow it to sit at room temperature for a day to kick-start fermentation.
  11. After 1 day, or when the kimchi starts getting bubbly and juicy, keep it in the fridge to slow the fermentation process: I find it stays good for about 2 months. IMG_20151111_192108852

You can enjoy the kimchi immediately after making it, and older, more fermented kimchi is a wonderful ingredient in instant noodles, fried rice, soup, and apparently as a dip for banana chips. I like the flavor best when it’s fresh made or about 2 weeks old, and I’ve never had it go bad while refrigerated.

Enjoy folks!