I've done this a few times now and have come up with a recipe and procedure that works pretty well for me. Generally, my goal is to stick to a recipe that will really let the hops shine through, but with enough malt backbone so you get a decent picture of how the hops interact with malt. My secondary goal is to be able to crank out as many batches as possible in a single brewday.
For the sake of efficiency, the recipe I use is an all-extract recipe. The idea is very similar to the "15-minute Pale Ale" recipe as seen on Basic Brewing Video and Beer & Wine Journal. To keep things even simpler, I don't use any steeping grains either. I'm not a big fan of Crystal malt in my pale ales anyways.
Here's a sample recipe. I shoot for 1.055 OG and 40-45 IBU's. That's enough IBU's to get a picture of how the hop works for bittering without being so much that it overshadows the flavor/aroma.
Title: Single Hop Pale Ale
Brew Method: Extract
Style Name: American Pale Ale
Boil Time: 15 min
Batch Size: 0.8 gallons (fermentor volume)
Boil Size: 1 gallons
Original Gravity: 1.055
Final Gravity: 1.015
ABV (standard): 5.21%
IBU (tinseth): 40.96
SRM (morey): 4.8
0.8 lb - Dry Malt Extract - Extra Light (72.7%)
0.3 lb - Liquid Malt Extract - Munich (27.3%)
0.15 oz - Apollo, Type: Pellet, AA: 18, Use: First Wort, IBU: 40.96
0.25 oz - Apollo, Type: Pellet, AA: 18, Use: Boil for 0 min
0.5 oz - Apollo, Type: Pellet, AA: 18, Use: Dry Hop for 7 days
Fermentis / Safale - American Ale Yeast US-05
Add 2-2.5gm of dry yeast.
This is a 1-gallon preboil batch, which gets me roughly 0.8 gallons into the fermenter after a 15-minute boil. The hopping schedule is designed to maximize the amount of hop flavor and aroma. You'll notice I use a "FWH" addition as opposed to a 15-minute addition. I'm trying to get a little extra flavor contribution here, so the hops go in before the boil. The brewing software I use (Brewer's Friend) calculates FWH IBU's as a 20-minute addition, so I feel that this is a decent approximation of IBU's here.
Also note that for a relatively high AA% hop you can make a batch using a single 1-ounce bag of hops. Low alpha acid hops might take 2 ounces to hit the IBU level you want.
So that's the down & dirty on my recipe. Next up I'll give you a rundown on my procedure and how I get 7 or 8 batches done in the amount of time it normally takes for a typical all-grain brewday.
Click here for Part 2.