Help Answer a Few Questions From a \"Green Bean\"

Kevin J

New member
Mar 4, 2007
10
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Ottawa, Canada
Hello All,

After taking sometime searching the forums I''ve already answered many of my questions yet a few uncertainties still remain and I wasn''t quite sure which section of the forum to post in. First off, I am by no mean a coffee expert or make a living or even plan on making a living off coffee, although a large portion of my income goes towards coffee. I''m am in the process of purchasing coffee making equipment and would greatly appreciate any input.

Tommorow morning I''m about to purchase my first batch of green beans and possibly a budget roaster (stove-top) should that pan-out I will go for a home roaster. Is an automatic roaster that much better then a stove-top, fyring pan, microwave or air popper, or is it more of a simplicity/repeatability issue?

From what I''ve read I should throw my blade grinder in the garbage and get a burr grinder, a local coffee supply shop has hand-powed grinders on sale will they suffice or is a powered one that much better?

Finally from what I''ve read many members are drip coffee maker fans. I''ve always found drip-coffee to be inferior to french press, espresso press or even perk coffee; just a personal preferance thing i suppose. At the moment I use an automatic percolator, stove top percolator, french press and stove top espresso maker; from time to time i simply boil water with grounds in it. At work we have a Capresso C1000 which IMHO produces an exceptional cup. That begin said what are the pros/cons regarding taste about different methods of extraction?

Thank you for your input,

Kevin
 

shadow745

Active member
Aug 15, 2005
1,605
9
Central North Carolina
Hi, I can't help out much at all regarding home roasting. I currently buy Black Cat from Intelligentsia and have no desire to try anything else at the moment.

As far as a grinder goes, you do need need a good burr grinder. If you're grinding for all the brew methods I'd suggest a good all-in-1 grinder. I bought a KitchenAid Pro Line grinder and made a few modifications to it and it works great and can be used for Turkish to French Press and anywhere in between.

If you think shots from an auto machine are exceptional wait till you taste an awesome shot from a well tuned semi-auto machine and grinder. I bought a KA Pro Line espresso machine to go with my grinder and haven't looked back. Later!
 

Craiger

New member
Mar 4, 2007
7
0
Brighton, Illinois
Athough I've been a coffee nut for almost 20 years, I'm rather green on how to make a really good cup of coffee. For the good cups, I've just gone out and bought them.

I recently found out that most of my beans are likely stale and wouldn't be accepted by most on this forum....though I still think they're okay. I'll go ahead and finish them off as I'm sure I've got more than $50 tied up in what I have in stock. I just won't offer them to friends.....for fear of losing them. LOL!

However, I'm in the planning process of building my own personal coffee bar in my basement. The basement's still being finished, so I've got some time to do my homework. I'm one that likes to do a lot of research before making my purchases.

I appreciate you starting this topic, Kevin J. I'll be watching it.
 
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Kevin J

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Mar 4, 2007
10
0
Ottawa, Canada
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Thanks for the advice so far guys,

I've just bought 2 pounds of green "sumatra" beans and plan on tossing them in a pan tonight for a barbaric roasting experiment, results will be posted. :)

KJB
 
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Kevin J

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Mar 4, 2007
10
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Ottawa, Canada
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are you roasting Lintong, Mandehling, SidiKalang...or something else?

To be honest I have no idea the gentleman running the store said "I can sell you a pound of summatra for 5 bucks" and I said sounds good.

So last night I heated up a pot on high heat on a stove and got roasting, after about 7 minutes I had a nice even dar brown coloured beans. I swirlled them in a siv to remove any remaining skins, ground them and perked up a pot. The result was very satisfying! One of the most aromatic coffees I have ever had (which isnt saying much). More experiments to come!

KJB
 
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Kevin J

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Mar 4, 2007
10
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Ottawa, Canada
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If your looking to roast on the stovetop my suggestion is get a heavy cast iron skillet or pot; a strong wrist is an asset here. Heat it up for a minuit or two then toss in the beans and start shaking the pot vigorusly. I used a wooden spoon in the other hand to help toss the beans around (yes the tip of the spoon did get burnt). A word of warning to anyone who is going to try this, turn your venthood on high and crack a window or it will really hurt your ears (the yelling from your wife or girlfriend due to the amount of smoke released). What I noticed is the darker you want the beans roasted the more smoke that gets released. I ended up with a few decent batches with a more even then expected roast.

My next plan is to designe a bush-league wire mesh cylinder on a spit with a handcrank to achieve a more even roast (unless I come accross a fair priced home roaster). Any suggestions of good online stores to buy coffee roasters on? I've found a few by googling but I don't mind paying a bit more for better product support (keeping in mind I'm in Canada).

In the meantime I will continue to stovetop roast and see if I can Improve my results.

Thanks All,

KJB
 

jlyon10

Super Moderator
Feb 16, 2007
436
1
Clemmons, NC
Home Roasting

I have been home roasting for about a year. It is really cool. I have a fresh roast plus 8 roaster and like it very much. The only complaint I have is it doesn't roast very much at a time. I am enjoying coffee so much I started my own website. Most of the coffee I am selling is roasted because it is real hard to find a drop shipper that will do small quantities of green beans. I do have 25 lb bags on my site and I also have a link to home roasters one of which fits a barbecue grill with a rotissiery. If you would like my web address, since we aren't allowed to drop url's just google Jims Coffee Beans and you should find it.
 

Craiger

New member
Mar 4, 2007
7
0
Brighton, Illinois
Re: Home Roasting

jlyon10 said:
If you would like my web address, since we aren't allowed to drop url's just google Jims Coffee Beans and you should find it.

...or just click your WWW button at the bottom of your post. :wink:
 

AJPRATT

New member
Mar 7, 2007
382
0
Atlantic City, NJ
I have a FreshRoast Plus 8 and I have been very happy with it. Its a hot air machine that is easy to use and maintain. I even got it with a pound of green beans. And I love it!
 
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Kevin J

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Mar 4, 2007
10
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Ottawa, Canada
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Excellent, I'l do a search on that roaster and maby buy one online if the price is right. Tonight I poured a bunch of beans in a pop-corn popper (stove top with a crank handel to stir the beans around, kinda micky-mouse) used a slightly lower heat then I did befor and the results were similar to the cast iron pot but my wrist isn't as tired. Again decent results but the roast is not perfectly even, and probably never will be with a stove-top job. Just for kicks I may butcher my pop corn air popper and see if it can produce enough heat to roast beans. In the end I'm sure buying the proper device is well worth the money and time saved, but I'm into this more for the experimental aspect and to have fun. More tales to come.

KJB
 
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