Edward Bourgeois wrote: A friend who knows I roast coffee was in Mexico in a coffee area and picked up about 5 pounds of green coffee from the local market. The problem is they still have the tan husks on and the parchment under that. What's the trick to home dehusking? To pick each husk apart will take a loooong time.
I don't know of any easy trick to do that. Whole dried "cereso" is the hardest, a terrible job. What country folks in Mexico do in that situation is to use a wall mounted grinder, setting the burrs far enough apart so that the greens aren't crushed and ground (that would a feat of great strength! ) but the outer skin gets broken. Then you pick the skins off. Then you do the same thing again, burrs a little closer together to break the inner parchment around the greens. For sample amounts any campesino can rub some parchment beans briskly and forcefully between their palms, and get most of the beans clean that way-it helps to have tough hands. To do 5 lbs--all afternoon and bleeding palms. When I first grew coffee it was before those hand grinders were readily available, and all the coffee in the village was de-husked using a stone metate, kneeling and pushing a round stone over the beans. Worst job in town, and you couldn't pay anyone enough to do that there anymore,
although it's still done way back in the hills, where they still grind all the corn that way. Small electric motor dehuskers are availible these days, but they cost over 1,000 dollars. If you have an over-the-fire popcorn popper, like an Androck, maybe an RK drum would work, you could try roasting the whole cherries, as I used to do sometimes, and some old timers still do. The roast will be uneven, but sometimes you get some very flavorfull coffee that way. Rub the roasted cherries over a screen and toss in the air to remove much of the burnt husks. If the outer skins are moldy at all, beware-you can get sick from that. My advice is to slowly dehusk a little by hand, try the grinder if you have one for a little bit more, roast a few whole cherries, plant a few and have some cool house plants, and give the rest away to some other coffee nut. Good luck!
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