DIY Coffee Roasting Workshop

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Long Beach Coffee Club helps educate their local community about all things coffee-related. We recently attended a coffee bean roasting workshop that was held at the home of one of the founders. Here is what we learned and what you can do if you want to roast coffee at home yourselves.

Roasting Time: 12-18 mins total

  • 8-12 mins roasting

  • 4-6 mins cool down

Step 1: Find a good place to set up your equipment.

It may be preferable to do your roasting outside since the coffee beans will chaff (skin of the beans will come off during the roasting process) and may get a bit messy. But other than that, it doesn't really matter if you're indoors or outdoors.

Long Beach Coffee Club Tip: Keep a Fire Extinguisher on hand. Always helps to be extra safe.

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Step 2: Find Good Beans and Equipment

Gather your unroasted beans (about a pound to start works), and find a good roaster. You can use a popcorn popper, iron skillet or a countertop roaster like the Behmor 1600 Plus Drum Roaster that was used at this event. Sweet Maria’s was kind enough to provide the unroasted green coffee beans for the event. You’ll also need a metal colander, mesh strainer and something to stir the beans with.

Long Beach Coffee Club Tip: If you're using a counter top roaster like the Behmor, have a flashlight handy as well so it can help you check how the roasting is going inside without pulling the beans out.

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Step 3: Start the roasting and listen for the crack!

Put the beans in the roaster and start the roasting. The beans will turn from green to yellow (this is called yellowing), which is a drying process for the beans. It can smell a bit grassy. After that, you can to listen for the first crack of the beans - which indicates the drying process has finished. This is also when most of the chaffing will happen. You can remove the beans anytime after the first crack. The longer the roast the beans, the darker the roast.

Long Beach Coffee Club Tip: The first crack will sound like popcorn or rice crispies! Temperature at first crack will be about 375.

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Step 4: Pull out the beans for coolings

At this point, you can pull out the beans and transfer them between a metal colander and mesh strainer to help cool them. Or you can put it on a metal pan. Either way, make sure to let them cool for 8-12 hours as the beans as still emitting CO2 gas. 

Long Beach Coffee Club Tip: Be careful with trying darker roasts. You will need to be very diligent in watching the coffee beans as they can easily get burnt at this point.

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Step 5: Breathe and store the beans

You’ll want to wait at least 24 hours before brewing the beans to allow the beans to mature. The beans will be then be good for many weeks if you keep it in airtight containers.

Long Beach Coffee Club Tip: Do not ever freeze or refrigerate coffee. That will ruin the taste.

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