If you have dry malt extract or malt extract syrup, it is non-diastatic. It is produced by mashing malted barley, which IS diastatic, with roasted barley in hot water(heated to the precise enzymatic activation temperature), to create an extract of barley sugar (maltose). The extracted maltose is collected in a barley soup and boiled. Instead of cooling the soup (called wort) and adding yeast to make beer, the barley soup is then dried into a powder or syrup. Hence, malt extract
Thus, malt extract is no more than maltose. It has no diastatic properties. It does convey all of the benefits of sugar, honey, or molasses, in feeding the yeast.
Be careful that it is not hopped malt extract. If it's flavored with hops, then it could be bitter.
- Fio, home brewer