Since we have launched the store we have had many inquiries: how to roast coffee at home? The answer to this question can be almost as varied as the number of people asking the question. There is not just one way to roast coffee and many people have their own preferences as to which way is the best. In this blog entry, I will not take the time to go into great detail as to any one home roasting method for green coffee beans but will try to give a brief overview to wet your interest. Perhaps in future blog posts I will take the time to go into greater detail of the different methods and how to gain the best success with each method.
There are many different methods to roast green coffee beans in your home. One of the most basic methods is by roasting coffee beans in a fry pan. With this method it is best to use a fry pan(perferably a heavy cast iron one) that will be dedicated to roasting coffee beans. The reason for this is that you don't want your bacon or sausage contaminating your coffee beans. You will need to continuously stir your coffeee beans to try and ensure the most even roast that you possibly can. This can be very challenging and can also result in quite a lot of smoke so remember to keep your hood fan on.
Another way that many people have tried is by baking their beans in the oven. Again this is a very difficult way to evenly roast your beans although their are many people that feel that this is their roasting method of choice.
A great entry level roaster would be a whirley bird popcorn maker. This method works pretty good as long as you do not overload the machine and you remember that you need to continuously turn the crank until your coffee is finished. At that point you should get the beans into a colander as quickly as possible to stop the roasting process. This method of roasting works very well and I have had many cups of coffee roasted this way that I have thoroughly enjoyed.
Many home coffee roasters have found that using a air popcorn maker works quite well. This is much less labour intensive and can provide for a pretty good roast if your popcorn popper can provide the necessary heat to bring the beans from start to finish (not all popcorn poppers are created equal).
The next method that I would like to mention is using the Fresh Roast coffee roaster. This is an air roast coffee roaster and within five to nine minutes will provide you with a nicely roasted batch of coffee beans. It is a very user friendly machine and in many ways is idiot proof. You will have a great batch of beans that will result in a lively cup that is easy to reproduce should you want to roast some more beans the same way.
The final way that I would like to mention in today's post is using the Gene Cafe coffee roaster. This is a drum roaster that will roast a larger batch of coffee than the Fresh Roast. It will take you approximately fifteen minutes to roast and then another 10 minutes to cool the beans. This machine will empasize the body of your coffeee and allows for much more user input should you want to tweek your roast. This is my perfered method for home roasting.
There are many other methods that have been used from hot air guns to barbeques, to other home made contraptioons. As I always say to my wife, "even a bad home roast is better than store bought coffee."
So why not try starting to home roast today? You might be in for the best cup of coffee that you have ever had.