I love coffee. I like feeling the heat through the ceramic mug. The scent spirals in steam against my face. The nuances of dark chocolate and Cabernet that flavor the taste. Yes, it is almost a sacramental experience.
And I have all the right equipment. Two coffee grinders. One is an old-fashion hand-cranked mill that makes perfect coffee. The other is our every day electric grinder. I have an insulated stainless Bodum French press that allows the oils of the coffee to remain and coat the tongue in a lingering finish.
But I’m lacking one thing. I’ve never roasted my own beans. A few weeks ago, a friend (thank you, Julie) sent us a bag of green coffee beans. I giddily opened the bag and took a whiff of green beans. I scowled. Green coffee beans stink. I spent time on Google, researching how to best roast the beans without a big money investment. It turns out that the most practical, cheap method of roasting is a popcorn popper. And it turns out that ours is the “highly recommended” brand. (Though I wonder if our popcorn will have a coffee flavor from here on out.)
So we (Ariel, Matt, and I) took the popper outside, having read that clouds of coffee smoke would set off our smoke alarms. Sadly, there were no clouds of smoke, though there was enough to keep the mosquitoes away. (The other day I got seven bites just while I was putting food in the pond for the goldfish. I’ve now assigned my kids to feed the fish.)
Coffee bean chaff floated through the air. And it smelled fantastic. We went for the dark roast, which our directions said would take 6.5 minutes. But it wasn’t dark enough. So we went to 8 minutes before we stopped the roast because we didn’t want the beans to burn. The roast isn’t as dark as we normally drink. We’ll do darker today.
The coffee had a delicious woodsy flavor with absolutely no bitterness. I’m hoping a longer roast time will bring out the deeper flavors and more of the oils. Our directions said that the beans should be glossy with oils and our beans didn’t get that way. Any suggestions from experienced roasters?
Here are some photos.