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Topic: Finally dialed in stovetop popper temps! (4 msgs / 134 lines)
1) From: james McDougal
Thank you everybody for the discussions about temperatures and roast levels
(and oily beans)!
I think I've finally dialed in the SS stovetop popper setup that I have with
the SS probe that Martin recommended.
When I look back over the temp profiles for the last 14 roasts and comparing
temperatures of 1C and 2C, it is apparent that my temp probe reads about 25
deg lower than the internal bean temperatures from Toms profile sheet.
Probably a contact thing as pointed out in another thread, but could also be
an accuracy thing with the probe since it can read plus/minus 8 deg.
Anyway, I've been putting too much reliance on the temperature and taking
the roasts much too far. I often stopped at a lower temp than planned, but
definitely have been overroasting anyway. I was doing *$ roasts and didn't
know the difference because I'm a noob who enjoyed dark *$ roasts. Getting a
whole new appreciation for lighter roasts thanks to the wonderful ideas and
sharing advice from this list!
Jim
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2) From: Brian Kamnetz
Great to hear that you are starting on the progression toward lighter
roasts, Jim. I think many, perhaps most, of us were dark coffee
drinkers in the bad old days before Sweet Maria's.
Brian
On Thu, Sep 25, 2008 at 7:59 AM, james McDougal  wrote:
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3) From: sci
Jim,
Good for you! I couldn't get temp probes to work well. I gave up on using
them for the stovetop popper. I use the thermometer only to preheat and then
I dump in the 1lb batch of beans. From there, it is about 15 mins to C+. I
found that the thermometer just doesn't correspond well to what's happening
in there. I start with a moderate flame, a 6 on my burner dial that goes up
to 10. I cut the gas burner down a little to 4 when the first outlier crack
begins. Then it's an easy-does-it gentle ride up to C+ or FC. I don't go
beyond FC+.
I'm going by color, smell, sound, and time. WHen the first outliers crack I
open the lid to watch the process. This of course threw off the thermometer
because it is suspended in the air, not in the bean mass due to the
agitator.
I get good results, even if they aren't scientific and precisely repeatable.
I love the whirley. It helps to have a good vent hood that actually vents to
the outside.  I have a friend who does the first half of the process inside
and finishes the second smokey part outside on a propane portable burner.
If you haven't tried it yet, split a roast. Take half of the beans out at C
or C+ and continue with the other half up to FC or FC+. It helps to have
somebody around to cool the first batch or use a little fan.
Ivan
"Coffee Animal"
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Date: Thu, 25 Sep 2008 07:59:13 -0400
From: "james McDougal" 
Subject: [Homeroast] Finally dialed in stovetop popper temps!
To: homeroast
Message-ID:
       <18989fef0809250459k425391a8p94699ac661d02ed>
Content-Type: text/plain; charsetO-8859-1
Thank you everybody for the discussions about temperatures and roast levels
(and oily beans)!
I think I've finally dialed in the SS stovetop popper setup that I have with
the SS probe that Martin recommended.
When I look back over the temp profiles for the last 14 roasts and comparing
temperatures of 1C and 2C, it is apparent that my temp probe reads about 25
deg lower than the internal bean temperatures from Toms profile sheet.
Probably a contact thing as pointed out in another thread, but could also be
an accuracy thing with the probe since it can read plus/minus 8 deg.
Anyway, I've been putting too much reliance on the temperature and taking
the roasts much too far. I often stopped at a lower temp than planned, but
definitely have been overroasting anyway. I was doing *$ roasts and didn't
know the difference because I'm a noob who enjoyed dark *$ roasts. Getting a
whole new appreciation for lighter roasts thanks to the wonderful ideas and
sharing advice from this list!
Jim
Homeroast mailing list
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4) From: james McDougal
Hi Ivan,
No sooner than bragging about how well the temp probe is working for me and
it quits!
I think the key is to have the rigid SS probe in the beans outside the
paddle - still reads less than bean temperature, but it seems consistent.
I tried a 12 oz roast of Brazil Cerrado decaf on Sat (temp probe died at 1
minute) for the wife. I had roasted this before and was shooting for the
same time and temp parameters, but I was really winging it after the probe
died. I quit about the same time as the first roast and was in 1C, but the
beans were a little too light - maybe city+ (my wife likes the chocolate to
come out). I'm guessing the difference was that I put the beans in at 400
instead of 425-450. I've really been relying on the temp probe as well as
sound and smell. I'm going to try roasting some E. Sidamo without the probe.
Maybe if I keep the lid open and use a flashlight to check the bean color
(through the smoke?) and use nearly same temp and time parameters as before
it will come out OK.
Actually, it's probably going to teach me to be more sensitive to sounds and
smell, until the new probe comes.
I really like the whirley, too. Being able to roast 12oz is really nice and
it may be possible to roast a pound!
Great idea about splitting the roast - can't wait to try it!
Thanks, Jim
On Thu, Sep 25, 2008 at 9:02 PM, sci  wrote:
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