HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Dog Dish/Heat Gun (9 msgs / 280 lines)
1) From: Len Freedman
I've been home roasting for about ten years now, using an original The 
Poppery.  I have two The Popperys, both from EBay. I bought a second one 
expecting the first one to burn out eventually, but it never has.  They 
were about $20 when I bought them but they turned out to be a good 
investment! 8^)
Anyway since my SO has become addicted to my homeroast, we go through 
the stuff faster than we used to.  So I am having to roast every couple 
of days.  Just a few days ago I read (here) about the dog bowl/heat gun 
method.  The advantage (to me) was that I could roast bigger batches, 
which meant longer intervals between.
I got a 1500w heat gun at Harbor Freight for $9.95.  Chicago Tool brand 
(Is there a Chicago in China?)  "For this product," the girl at the 
register said, "We offer a special warranty--two years for $5.95."  Six 
dollars for a two year warranty on a ten dollar heat gun?  "No thanks," 
I said, "I'll take my chances."   A 64-oz stainless steel dog dish at 
Petsmart for $11 (with a rubber non-slip ring around the bottom edge).  
In other words, about the same level of investment as The Poppery ten 
years ago.  About half what they go for today.
I began with two cups of beans.  Heat.  Stir with wooden spoon.  Keep 
heating.
After five minutes I thought I had failed.  The beans were still green, 
just a slight grassy smell.  Two cups seemed like an awful lot of beans, 
maybe too many to keep warm.  But just as I was thinking this, they 
began 'puffing' and losing their green color.  First crack began around 
8:00.
I found I could use the nose of the heat gun to stir the beans.  The 
instructions on Coffee Geek didn't mention this, so I thought maybe it 
was wrong. But from the sound of the fan in the gun, it didn't seem like 
this restricted the airflow at all.  The odd bean here and there blew 
out of the bowl and I'd pick them up and put them back.  I might have 
lost 10 or 15 beans this way.
There didn't seem to be as much chaff as with the The Poppery.  I could 
see chaff forming on the beans but not separating from then.  I wondered 
if this would be a problem, if I'd have to rub the beans off afterwards 
and blow the chaff off.  Turned out not to be a problem.  Also the first 
crack didn't seem as much, I mean as many cracking sounds, especially 
considering that I was using more than twice the volume of beans as I 
was used to.  Second crack began around 14:00.  I don't usually roast to 
'rolling' second crack but I let this roast go a little longer to see 
how second crack would develop.  As with first crack, it didn't seem 
quite as enthusiastic.  But the beans looked and smelled great!  So I 
decided to dump and cool at 16 minutes.
Two cups of green beans produced 3 and a half cups of roasted beans.  I 
thought consistency might be a problem but it wasn't, in fact this 
method produced a more consistent color than my The Poppery!  There 
didn't seem to be nearly as much chaff, but it might be that it was 
produced over a longer period of time so it just didn't seem like as 
much.  Likewise much less smoke.  The dog dish, made of fairly thin 
stainless steel, remained cool  enough on the outside that I could pick 
it up to dump it without gloves or potholders, and only a few seconds 
after dumping it was cool on the inside as well!  The wooden surface 
under the dish wasn't scorched or even warm!  I'm very pleased with the 
results.
I began as a coffeeholic with Peets back in the 80s.  When I began home 
roasting I wanted to do my beans to the 'black & oily' stage like Peets 
does, but I found that when I roasted them that dark they always seemed 
to taste thin and two-dimensional.  Every so often I get a pound of 
Peets, and I marvel at how they are able to roast every variety to 
French Roast without losing the varietal character of the beans 
themselves.  I've been told it's the roast profile that does this.  The 
HG/DD method will give me the opportunity to experiment with this.  Next 
time I'm going to try keeping the beans between 1st and 2nd crack a 
little longer, and to let the roast proceed to rolling 2nd crack.
Any other suggestions?
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2) From: Bill
Experiment with the amount of time between first and second that you like.
 I seem to prefer a shorter time...
As they say here, when you get tired of stirring, get a breadmaker.  I just
bought my first one, gonna roast with it later today.
First crack likely would be less vigorous than with a popper.  The water is
released from the beans in the lead-up to 1st, so it's less vigorous.  A
popper is a quick ramp to 1st, so there's lots of water to liberate.  Don't
know about second, though!
Congrats on your first successful HG roast!  Quite an amazing way to roast,
isn't it???
happy roasting!
bill in wyo
On Wed, Apr 30, 2008 at 12:05 PM, Len Freedman  wrote:
<Snip>
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3) From: Brian Kamnetz
On 4/30/08, Len Freedman  wrote:
<Snip>
People's Glorious Orange heat gun rides again!!!! You can find some
discussion of this particular heatgun (provided Harbor Freight is
still selling the same model.... is it orange?) in the list archives:http://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/index.htmand search for glorious orange.
Brian
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4) From: John Crippen
Enjoy the new method!  I've been a HG/DB roaster for almost four years.  I
have two minor suggestions, based on how I get good batches.  YMMV and I am
not an expert at this.  That said,
1.  I try to get the beans to the light brown, pre-first crack point by 4 to
5 minutes, regardless of the size of the batch.  I think I do this based on
something I read about needing to get to the Brownian effect by that point.
2.  I use a large metal egg whisk instead of a spoon.  It makes it easier
for me to move the beans and I don't have to worry about wooden spoon ash in
my coffee.
You are going to be amazed as you roast your different beans with this
method.  They all behave so differently!
Have fun,
John Crippen
On Wed, Apr 30, 2008 at 12:05 PM, Len Freedman  wrote:
<Snip>
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5) From: raymanowen
"...I wanted to do my beans to the 'black & oily' stage like Peets does, but
I found that when I roasted them that dark they always seemed to taste thin
and two-dimensional."
If you kept applying heat until the roast looked as dark and oily as you
wanted, exactly when did you propose to stop the roast? Hint- it didn't
actually stop until the heat was gone. By that time, the train has rolled
way past the station and you're speaking perfect Spanish.
"(Is there a Chicago in China?)"
Not sure of that one. According to a persistent story among GI's, Usa City
was located in Japan on Kyushu. Lucent's stuff is now made in China.
Cheers, Mabuhay -RayO, aka Opa!
Got the Roasting/ Brewing interface?
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6) From: Terry McVay (rr)
Always worried about heat loss with that big open bowl so I folded 
several sheets of aluminum foil and covered the back half of the 
bowl with it.  Seemed to help...
Terry/Kona

7) From: Dan Audette
Excuse my ignorance on this one, but for some reason I was thinking that one
applied the heat (using this method...obviously) to the bowl, rather than
the beans. It appears that I'm wrong in my assumptio? And, yes, that's a
question!
On Tue, May 6, 2008 at 10:39 AM, Terry McVay (rr) 
wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Dan Audette
Corporate Event Management
All The Details, Inc.
6955 Harvest Rd.
Boulder, CO 80301
303-544-0359 (P)
303-449-7133 (F)
dan
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8) From: Bill
Dan, this list is a great place to learn, don't worry about the questions!
 Yes, you apply the heat to the beans.  The bowl simply holds the beans, and
you (or something) agitates the beans.  The HG provides the heat.bill in wyo
On Tue, May 6, 2008 at 11:11 AM, Dan Audette  wrote:
<Snip>
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9) From: Dan Audette
Thanks for the response, Bill....appreciated!
I will give this method a try while I'm figuring out how to build my own
roaster....in time!
On Tue, May 6, 2008 at 3:00 PM, Bill  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Dan Audette
Corporate Event Management
All The Details, Inc.
6955 Harvest Rd.
Boulder, CO 80301
303-544-0359 (P)
303-449-7133 (F)
dan
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