Beer Advent Calendar: The Ultimate Christmas Gift for True Beer Lovers

Beer Advent Calendar: The Ultimate Christmas Gift for True Beer Lovers

If you’re the kind of person who dreads the experience of shopping for gifts, especially during the festive seasons like Christmas, I know exactly how you feel. Always trying to come up with the perfect present, I put pressure on myself to find that one thing that the recipient would love and find joy in, and hasn’t received anything like it from somebody else.

Instead of enjoying the experience, I fill myself with anxiety the closer I get to the holidays. If this sounds like you as well, my advice is to start looking for the ideal gift months in advance, like right now, to save you from the headache later on. Moreover, by adopting this strategy you’d also be able to better manage your budget. One of my latest discoveries is an amazing beer advent calendar box that I’m sure the beer lovers in my life would certainly feel happy about.

What’s So Special About This Advent Calendar?

The celebration of this important Christian holiday has a great deal to do with tradition and family togetherness, which is exactly what the advent calendars embody. Ever since they originated in Germany at the beginning of the 20th century, printed out by Gerhard Lang who himself enjoyed such special calendars created by his mother, they’re the gifts that carry the true festive spirit.

Nowadays you can find these calendars filled with everything, from chocolates, and pet treats, to wax melts and all sorts of alcohol – in short, they’ve come a long way over the years. As beer became the popular choice of drink in Australia recently, there’s been a huge interest in creating and supporting local breweries. By finding an Australian beer advent calendar consisting of various craft beers from various top breweries around the country, you’d be able to do just that – support the national craft beer industry.

beer advent calendar
source: wdrb.com

Need More Reasons?

The Package

I’ve got two words why I love this type of gift: the box. Not only would the contents amaze the recipient, but so would the box they come in. From Christmas themed designs, to discrete unbranded designs that would make the person guess what’s inside, you’ve got a wide range of options to choose from. To make it all the more special, you could also throw in a note or a gift tag to send your love with words.

Some of the trusted retailer companies go to great lengths to offer the best of the best, they even create beer advent boxes that keep the drink nicely stored, protected with flaps and individual partitions, and come in sizes that allow you to easily fit them in the fridge to always keep the cans cool as you count the days. So even if you don’t have the time to shop in stores around, or personally drop off the gift, you can order online knowing it would arrive safe and sound.

packaging of beer advent calendar gift
source: menkind.co.uk

The Variety

As the number of craft beer breweries increases in the Land Down Under, so does the number of amazing brews. Perhaps the recipient is into trying out new and exciting tastes, and even so they mightn’t be aware of all the different beers, styles and breweries there are.

Getting a beer advent that’s packed with exclusive options for each of the 25 days (yes, Christmas included!) all carefully chosen for the year means you present them with the chance to increase their craft beer knowledge. Truly a mouth-watering selection that would give them a taste sensation as they find their new favourite beers! I’m sure you’d agree with me when I say this makes the perfect type of present to surprise yourself with too as you get a different can to crack open every day!

The Price

beer advent calendar
source: winemag.com

I’m not going to lie, I like the affordable price such a calendar comes in. Knowing how expensive it can be to come across craft beers from renown brands, finding a box consisting of a variety of delicious options of quality offered with a discount that would save me 20% to 30% is something I can’t resist. This way I’m able to put some more money aside and use it on other treats and Christmas gifts for the season.

As you can see, there’s more than one reason why this gift choice should be on your wish list. Still, even if you prefer something more specific instead of acquiring a variety of ales to treat the true beer fans in your life, there’s an alternative gift you could give a try: beer subscription.

Most beer retailers that are well stocked on quality craft beer from top breweries from all around Australia also offer a range of mixed packs with ales from overseas. Just choose the time period you want the recipient to be receiving the beers for, could be three, six, nine months, a year or even longer, order and pay online, and the surprise will be on its way!

Keep Your Dough Fresh: The Importance of Retarder Proofer Cabinets

Keep Your Dough Fresh: The Importance of Retarder Proofer Cabinets

When you buy your favourite bread or pastry, you don’t think much about how it was made. A dough and an oven and that are that, you’d say, but the process is not so simple. Between mixing the dough with a spiral mixer and baking it in the oven, there are some important steps in between. 

One of those essential processes is dough proofing. Proofing or as most people know it ‘rising’ is a process that lets the dough reach a greater height and volume than it would if it’s directly put in the oven. Dough that has yeast needs to be proved before the baking stage. There are three ways to do this. You can cover the dough and let it rise at room temperature, you can put the pan of dough near a heat source to catalyze the process, or you can simply use a professional retarder proofer (a machine specially made to do this). 


If you own a pizzeria or bakery business where you make a lot of dough and you need to speed up the preparation time, it definitely pays off to get a bakery retarder and proofer. This type of machine is a special cabinet that allows you to adjust the temperature and humidity levels as needed. This way you to have complete control of the proofing process, and have the option to retard it and maintain the dough fresh to be used in a later time. 

Benefits

proofer retarder baking croissants
source: hospitalityhub.com.au

Using a retarder proofer cabinet has two main benefits. First of all, it gives you the flexibility to bake your dough whenever you want, and second, it can improve the flavour of the final product. 

Operational Flexibility

proofer retarder cakes
source: capitalref.com

Dough proofer retarder cabinets allow you to postpone the proofing process. These machines let you divide the production process into two phases: dough mixing and proofing baking. This would allow you to mix the dough and let your staff go home in the night shifts while the dough is proofed in the cabinet and becomes ready for baking the next morning. By not having to keep your staff on night shifts, you could require fewer employees.

What’s more, in addition to regarding the whole process, it can also speed it up. The whole process of making bread can often consume an entire day. You’ll have to mix the dough, wait for it to rise, shape it, wait for it rise again and then finally bake it. If a single loaf of bread takes about six hours, imagine how much you can manage to bake with the help of the retarder cabinet. 

These cabinets will also allow you to keep an amount of dough in stock, which can be used to bump up your production on peak days. Тhe prooving process causes less evaporation, so the dough will be moist and will rise more. This means you’ll need up to 50% less yeast, so you’ll be able to save on this as well. 

Organoleptic Properties 

A slower proofing process can lead to a smoother dough to the core of the product. So, by using the proofer you can also improve the organoleptic properties of your products. The taste and aroma will intensify (that isn’t always the case when you have fast and forced proofing). That being said, you can use this machine to add more flavour to your premium-grade products, like artisan bread.

How to Use a Retarder Proofer

proofer retarder baker chef
source: https://vanrooy.com.au

In the proofing process, the dough rises because of the chemical reactions caused by the enzymes mixed into it. The enzymes interact with the starches in the flour (they turn them into sugar). Next, the sugar turns into carbon dioxide. Once this process is finished, the retarder proofer machine is here to help. 

Most bakeries or successful pizza businesses use the retarder proofer cabinet at night. It can keep the dough below 4°C. At this temperature, the yeast fermentation slows down, and the production of carbon dioxide stop. Practically, it’s put on hold until the set programme begins (for a maximum of 72 hours). This is possible because of the precise control of temperature, humidity and time in a thermally-insulated environment that will let the fermentation begin only at the set time.

There are several stages of using the retarder proover machine. 

Blocking

The first stage starts when the dough is introduced. The temperature is usually set around 2°C or lower (the dough won’t react when placed in such a cold environment). Keeping the chamber this cold blocks some the fermentation. However, avoid setting the temperatures too low, otherwise, your dough will freeze and then you’ll have to wait for it to defrost.

Maintenance

This phase happens between blocking and proving. Maintenance, or the stage of conservation, requires a temperature of 2oC degrees. Since this is quite a low temperature, the dough won’t react, or in other words, it can be maintained up to 72 hours.

Fermentation

Avoid proofing your dough at temperatures that are higher than 30C because it would annul the effect of the retarded proofing process. The heat and humidity stage with temperatures higher than 22 and 28 C is known as the stage of fermentation. This is the stage when the dough rises. 

Sleepy

Once the dough is proved, it can go into the sleepy stage. The bread proving process slows down when the temperature reaches 14oC. At this stage, you should try to lower this temperature while also ensuring to set the right humidity level to maintain the dough. Don’t keep the product longer than two hours in this stage. The duration of the sleepy stage mainly depends on the dough composition and the overall process. 

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