Malting is a process applied to cereal grains, in which the grains are made to germinate by soaking in water and are then quickly halted from germinating further by drying with hot air. Malting grains develops the enzymes that are required to modify the grain's starches into sugars including monosaccharides such as glucose or fructose, and disaccharides such as sucrose or maltose. It also develops other enzymes, such as proteases, which break down the proteins in the grain into forms which can be utilized by yeast. Malted grain is used to make malt beer, malt whisky, malted shakes, malt vinegar, confections such as Maltesers and Whoppers, and some baked goods, such asmalt loaf. Malted barley is often a label-listed ingredient in blended flours typically used for yeast breads, and a form of it specially selected for higher protein is typically used in the manufacture of many common baked goods.
The term "malt" refers to several products of the process:
·The grains to which this process has been applied, for example malted barley;
·The sugar, heavy in maltose, derived from such grains, such as the baker's malt used in various cereals;
·A product based on malted milk, similar to a malted milkshake.
Whisky or beer made from malted barley or rye is also called malt, as in Alfred Edward Housman's aphorism "malt does more than [John] Milton can, to justify God's ways to Man."