Friday, September 6, 2013

Kitchen Failure - homebrew beer from a tin and a digression into a Pastafarian world view

Perhaps it is true what they say, alcohol leads to spiritual contemplation.  A failed attempt to brew beer at home, has lead to some...sigh, well...the blog title suggests there will be occasional jaunts into the more religious aspects of the kitchen... feel free to skip this one if you aren't in the mood

Here is where I dress myself in full pirate regalia, eyepatch included, for it was said that one shall not discuss the details of the religion of the Flying Spaghetti Monster unless one is dressed in the Holy Garb.

Pastafarian literature tells us that there is a heaven, and in heaven there is a beer volcano.  An unlimited supply of beer is all well and good, but an actual volcano?  Call call me someone who doesn't follow the dogma of a religion to it's extreme, but I don't imagine how a volcano that spews unlimited amounts of liquid brew into the eternal resting place of my soul, would be a good thing.  I know, I know, heaven isn't suppose to be logical, but wouldn't an unending flow of beer eventually fill up heaven?  I mean, how can we drink enough to prevent the constant deluge from becoming a flood, when we are dead?

The Whole Wheat approach to the subject of beer is a bit different.  We love the idea of drinking beer on Fridays, the holy day of those who follow the teachings of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.  Beer goes great with pasta and many other things.  But maybe, the volcano of beer is a metaphor for how to live our lives better in this world. 

The Whole Wheat Pastafarian looks at beer much the way we look at food, only with more importance.

  The Flying Spaghetti Monster created the world in which we live in, and being a deity that resembles food (or that we have a food that resembles the divine), the Whole Wheat Pastafarian believes that this is a sign from his divine noodliness that it is our duty in life to create the best foodstuff that we possibly can.  Be this cooking at home, or growing the best ingredients, whatever our path in life, the Whole Wheat Pastafarian holds sacred the creation of food, not just for today, but we also believe that it is our duty to keep the world as healthy as possible so that future generations can also enjoy the same, or better, dietary connection to the divine that we feel every day.  Some may say that it's not much different than the bread and wine that Christian followers believe.  In fact I've seen some of the more evangelical members of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster may go much further than that, but they are, um, more extreme in their religious view.  The Whole Wheat Pastafarian would never go that far, as moderation is the key to keeping a healthy diet, healthy soil and healthy relationships with others.

To create healthy food, we need to create a healthy food source.  Good tasting food that nourishes the body and spirit, comes from healthy farming practices.  It is more complicated than I'm going to go into here, but basically it comes down to healthy soil.  Healthy soil means that we grow delicious food for ourselves and can continue to produce food to feed the world for generations to come.  The second most holy task the Whole Wheat Pastafarian can set themselves in this world is to grow food (especially grains that make yummy pasta) in a way that improves the soil over time so that whomever comes next, can have a better starting place than their predecessor.  This stands in stark contrast to those who have lost their ways, and the vast wastelands that now exist where before, was fertile soil only a generation ago.  

The Whole Wheat Pastafarian follows a different path, so that through successive generations, the ground grows stronger, produces better crops of grains and soil to grow more and more... and so on and so forth...putting an end to humanity caused desertification (instead focusing on dessertification - as in two s's - pass another slice of chocolate cake please)

But that's simply the second most holy of tasks a Pastafarian can seek in their life... 

Whole Wheat Pastafarians are very quiet on the internet, most of them are too busy growing food or cooking it to spend time chatting in the virtual world.  However, I suspect that those who feel the touch of His Noodly Appendage most strongly in this world, pursue the art of brewing beer.  Perhaps, and I speculate here, this is where the symbol of the Beer Volcano comes in -  a powerful brimming over of potential and spiritual intoxication.  I know I feel a compulsion to brew my own beer... but not only that, to grow my own barley, to malt it at home, to select the hops or other herbs to bitter the brew, to capture the miracle of wild yeast that lives invisibility in the air around us, to... to recapture that once true spiritual calling that accompanied brewing.  Be it the monasteries of the middle ages, the Bacchanalian cults of the ancient Greeks, be it the touch of His Noodly Appendage into my soul... I want to make beer, from scratch soil.

So I bought a tin.

That's probably where I went wrong.  Short cuts.  But I'm not yet ready to invest in a from-soil method of brewing.  The timing just isn't right.

I followed the instructions on the back of the tin.

I got something that smells like beer but tastes like old socks.  It's good enough to cook with, but not much else.

Maybe homebrew beer from a tin is not for me.  Maybe I should just stick to cooking and brewing apple cider... or maybe an opportunity will present itself in the future, encouraging me to try again.  Maybe I'll call it divine intervention, or perhaps I'll call it a happy circumstance.  

On a different note, I was asked recently is the Flying Spaghetti Monster made from whole wheat pasta or white pasta?  Although we cannot know the true nature of the divine, our minds being limited by our experiences in this world and lacking the necessary enlightenment to understand the composition of the divine, I can only say this: You cannot make white flour without starting from the whole grain.  So even white flour contains a kernel of the true nature of god.  (apologies for the excessive corniness.)

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