Coffee Roasting, There is always something you need just after waking up with all intentions of getting rid from sleepy eyes, guess what? Coffee! This is exactly what we are looking for after a good night’s sleep. I hope you are the same, without a doubt.
Although, there is a question left! This is truly a nasty doubt to leave without an answer.
We are well aware on the great taste of this but we are hopeless when it comes to the part about making coffee or simply producing coffee. We have no idea about any single production tactics and other procedures followed.
Well, we are glad to help you!
We will first look upon the botany. This coffee plant is actually a shrub or a bush with waxy leaves, flowers growing on the branches and berries which are commonly produced twice a year. The flowers are brilliant white in colour with an adorable smell and after fertilization, the flower develop into a berry with the seed inside.
The maximum life span of a plant is about 80 – 100 years according to the research. The best time for the production is the golden years of a plant and the golden years of this crop is the time period between seven years till about twenty-five or thirty of age.
Any climatic condition is favourable for cultivation but it hates frosty snow and this will result the plant to die. Watering is necessary just twice a day. Hence, the average product receive from a plant varies 10 – 11 pounds per year.
Now we are having a satisfactory knowledge about the plant so, we have discussed to have a quick peep into the initial origin and the history. This was initially called as ‘Qahhwat al-bun’ later came to be called as ‘Qahwa’ whiah was later derived as ‘Kahve’ by the Turks and the English term derived from the Dutch word ‘Koffie’.
The original credit of discovering this goes to Ethiopian herder called Kalfi a really long time ago. The bean was actually treated as ‘the fruit of the evil’. However, the Yemen is also is claiming to have an ownership too.
Well, this is the summary of the history.
We are going to talk about the main stages of processing in order to achieve the fundamentals of making coffee. This initially begins with the picking of berries from the plant and followed by wet and dry processes later the drying process and the final stage of roasting.
It is the right moment for the main topic of this article since you are ready with the rudimentary knowledge. So, what are we waiting for?
Let us commence our expedition!
Roasting of coffee
This is the main level of getting all the necessary essence of the coffee. This might look like the time for burning the beans in naked fire but it is not. It is far more than just burning. about the feelings in the heart of a true lover of coffee. It is about the love which arises in the immature heart of man.
Roasting process is the transformation of chemical and physical properties of a coffee bean in to that of a roasted bean. As we have mentioned above, this is what producers the flavour and a elegant fragrance.
According to the archaeological sources, in 1258 AD, sheik Omar discovered the advantages of roasting at Ousab in Arabia. Having nothing to eat Omar decider to eat the berries he found in the desert, once finding that the beans were bitter, he attempted to improve taste by roasting them.
After, he added water and drank it which ultimately resulted him being refreshing – the superior qualities and properties helped Omar to be victories and he was named saint. About, a century later, Arabs began roasting these berries over fire and grinding them – they named this as ‘Qahwa’ which means ‘what prevents sleep’.
The joyous of coffee lasted to continue and spread upon many empires and cultures with time. It became a major trend and in 1400s, the coffee roasting technology started to take off, which began in the Arabian region. The first methods were not that magical and were actually holding a large spoon in to a fire. Then it was a flat pan with a long handle, still not fancy. Centuries later, large cylinder with a crank was developed. By the next few years people adopted many different methods.
Methods of Coffee Roasting
As a man who loves coffee, we have no doubt that you have come across these questions, “what type of roast you like, light or dark?” You may know how these tastes individually but in fact you might not know the reason for this change and you may not know that there are many other roast types that has a unique flavour.
The difference is determined by how long the beans are cooked, the higher the temperature reaches and the darker the beans become, the major impact is the internal chemistry which produces different flavours.
There are three main types coffee roast, with different procedures followed that fall under different categories. They are given below.
01. Light roast – This method is simply roasting the beans for a short period of time, until they become beige in colour. These light roasted beans are clanked to produces more mellow and elegant flavours and even can be in some cases.
The unknown or the lesser known fact is that this roast actually possesses a stronger content of caffeine. This is because caffeine is extracted and taken away during the roasting. But light roast can be a supplement server for low caffeinated roast.
02. Medium Roast – This is a roast that is slightly darker than light roast. As a whole, medium roast are the most flavour full not too bold either and a healthy choice with healthy amount of caffeine. There is no wonder this to be the main ingredient in the American breakfast. There is a sub category of this called medium – dark roast which is a combination of which and balanced flavours.
03. Dark Roast – This is the most perfect choice for the European continent. Dark roast is a strong, bold and a very bitter roast with marked contrasting features. There are many styles of this which includes Italian, French, New Orleans and sure the espresso!
Roasting at your home
Though you have tasted a dozen types of roast, there is no probability that you have tasted coffee that you have roasted at home. Well, we are now taking you on a tasty voyage in the kitchen about roasting coffee. And what could possibly go wrong from roasting at home.
Home roasting secures you’re the freshness as possible, and the lightness and the darkness is according to your preference. With the use of simple machineries, you can easy complete this task. You can learn this easily.
There is something you need to remember before entering this process is that not all coffee is the same so, the temperatures and the machines vary. This is just experimenting so; we advise that your first attempt might not be successful but try.
There are few appliances which you can use in order to have perfect homemade roast.
01. With the use of a Roasting machine – These machines operate with the same principles of the popcorn machine by using fast moving hot air to flow throughout the roaster to burn the beans and keep them agitated while they are roasting.
This is the far easiest method out of all since the roaster maintains the majority of heavy lift for you. All the steps that you need to follow in this process are simple. First, place the right amount of coffee inside the roaster.
Then allow the beans to roast till the desired colour appears but knew that the longer you roast, the darker the beans get. Next, pour the beans into a colander stir well till it is warm. Now store the beans in room temperature away from direct sun light.
02. With the use of a stove top popcorn maker – Before the modern inventions, people used the stove to do the roasting, which is technically a pot with a lid. For this process, you will need a few things such as a whirly pop stove popcorn popper and an outdoor burner.
All you have to do is to preheat the stove for about 5 and 10 minutes till the temperature is 400 degrees. Once the popper is at the right temperature, add the beans and start to crank the handle. This would be the initial stage of developing the beautiful fragrance and the taste. It is important to pay complete attention in order to control the flavour and avoid any burning of beans.
After the roasting is over, dump the coffee onto a baking sheet and allow cooling down in the natural breeze. Now store them in an airtight container.
03. Hot air popcorn popper – This is quite an easy method that could be recommended even for the beginners. It takes only a few minutes and allows you to experiment with the roast, make it either light or dark or even in the middle. These are the main stuff you need for this, a hot air popcorn popper and a bowl.
You have to begin with preheating the popper for 30 seconds. Once the popper is good with the proper temperature, add the raw beans of about half a cup into the popper. The roasting will only take 5 minutes but you have to stay close by in order to monitor the beans in all the stages.
Make sure that you are not leaving the popper unattended. You will notice the transition they make from the raw texture to the grind-brew able, and you can decide the roast that you desire. When they reach the desired roast, switch off the popper and lay the beans on a flat spread. Now they are ready for storage.
You can try out these methods for roasting coffee at your place. For a true fun and adventure, you even can try roasting them in pan or a grill or even roasting them over a camp fire too. The thing is this actually works since the heat source is what it really matters in roasting.
Factors to determine whether your roast is right
There are key sliding scales that are used to describe the final result of your roast. It is most commonly described from the colour, development and the end speed. But the scientifically proved scales are,
- Rate of Rise – this is the improvement of the temperature per unit amount of time. Most of the roast creates an unpleasant flavour from baking. Conversely, the roast might lack any sweet taste after the first crack.
- Air flow – this is important than just providing apart way for the by-products. The increasing of heat is a result of higher air flow. This will take off the smoke and chaff which is produced later after roasting.
- Temperature – depending on the temperature variations, the resulted coffee beans could appear full baked, stalled and ideal and perfect.
- Roast style – This directly affect the flavour qualities of any coffee bean. The name of coffee is not an indicator of the origin but the style used, for instance the Viennese coffee is not name after it origin, but the roast style made popular by the coffee lovers in Vienna century ago.
- Roast time and coloration – The total time for this is not specific and it depends on the quality, total moisture content and their grade. Also, the age and the weather conditions affect this. The colour of the bean changes from light to dark during roasting since they absorb heat and some oils will appear on their outer surface.
Best books on coffee roasting for all coffee lovers
- I Know Coffee: Harvesting, Blending, Roasting, Brewing, Grinding & Tasting Coffee by Jessica Simms.
- The Coffee Roast’s Companion by Scott Rao.
- Uncommon Ground: The History of Coffee and How It Transformed Our world.
- The World Atlas of Coffee: From beans to brewing – coffees explored, explained and enjoyed by James Hoffmann.
- The New Rules of Coffee: A Modern Guide for Everyone by Joirdan Michelman.
- I Love Coffee! Over 100 Easy and Delicious Coffee Drinks by Susan Zimmer.
- The Art & Craft of Coffee Cocktails: Over 80 recipes for mixing coffee and liquor by Jason Clarke.
- Coffee: A Globe History.
We have come across through a long way in a long and expedition to many unknown things about Coffee and the roasting process. We hope that this was useful and meaningful for your coffee requirement. There is always one thing you should remember; this is not only a drink to feed your thirst but that this was created from heaven specially for humans to spend a luxurious life regardless of your wealth since coffee does not compare people and it belongs to all.
We sincerely hope that you got a brief knowledge on coffee roasting and we look forward to help you. Thank you for reading, once again!