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  • Making instant coffee

    Id like to try making my own instant coffee, and I dont mean spooning it out of a jar from the supermarket.  Why?  Just for fun and perhaps its just the mad scientist in me trying to get out. ;D

    Has anyone tried doing this? If so (or if not), hearing your experiences and ideas would be greatly appreciated.

    Basically Im thinking of using the evaporation method. For some reason the idea of starting by just making a regular coffee and allowing it to evaporate doesnt sit well with me. Maybe its because I want it to be different (in a good way). So, Im wondering if I wouldnt be better off starting with a CP brew?

    Your ideas?


  • #2
    Re: Making instant coffee

    Oh my god. Another forumer going mad...

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    • #3
      Re: Making instant coffee

      Originally posted by ezralimm link=1221784243/0#1 date=1221786485
      Oh my god. Another forumer going mad...
      I have to say - that I thought it was a very odd post from Dennis. Maybe his account has been hacked or something

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      • #4
        Re: Making instant coffee

        Originally posted by ezralimm link=1221784243/0#1 date=1221786485
        Oh my god. Another forumer going mad...
        Well, Den self-admittedly has OCCCD as his signature ;D

        How does Nestle do it BTW? Surely some sort of chemical cocktail added to make it soluble ... :P

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        • #5
          Re: Making instant coffee

          lol - Went mad a long time ago! This is just for fun, and who knows, maybe Ill come up with something palatable, especially if I start off with CP.

          Tony, I think Nestle just boil the crap out of it, let it evaporate, then drop it down a silo, add hot air and its instant by the time it gets to the bottom. Pretty simple really and no need for any additives.

          Though freeze-dried is said to be preferable as it doesnt tend to destroy as many of the oils, I dont have the equipment or desire to freeze to 40* below zero.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Making instant coffee

            Thought it would be prudent to know how instant coffee was invented and how it came about
            Here is a little light read and an excerpt

            Instant coffee was invented back in 1906 by George C. Washington. He was an Englishman living in Guatemala and a chemist by trade. An avid coffee-drinker, he noticed a powdery buildup on the spout of his favorite silver coffee pot. That prompted his curiosity and further experimentation followed. He eventually produced a dried coffee crystal much like we still have today. His brand was called Red E Coffee.
            Bascially, instant coffee is just regularly brewed coffee with nearly all the water removed. Its not that mysterious a process at all. There is no strange chemical adulteration that goes on. Instant coffee is still pure coffee.

            Read more on the 2 methods used today
            http://coffeetea.about.com/cs/kindsofcoffee/a/instantcoffee.htm


            However
            Instant, or soluble coffee, as it was originally called dates back as early as 1771 when the British government granted a patent for a ‘coffee compound’. There have been many attempts since then to make Instant Coffee more palatable but capturing the essence of freshly roasted, freshly brewed coffee has proven a difficult task


            KK

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            • #7
              Re: Making instant coffee

              Originally posted by Dennis link=1221784243/0#0 date=1221784242
              So, Im wondering if I wouldnt be better off starting with a CP brew?
              Hi Dennis,

              Ive often thought that this would be a better way to make instant coffee too.  To me, CP produces a much smoother cup, with less acidic and bitter elements, which is something regular instant, or brewed for that matter, cannot claim...  Starting with a more refined CP coffee can only result in a better instant.  Well, my 2c anyway...

              Will be interesting to see how you go.

              Cheers,

              Michael

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              • #8
                Re: Making instant coffee

                Thanks KK - I actually have already done a fair bit of research. Methinks its time to whip up some CP in the Aeropress!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Making instant coffee

                  KK, youre a veritable well of knowledge mate!

                  Great link ... I google researched once I saw Dens post and just got a whole lot of banal sites instructing me how to scoop a spoon of instant jar crud into a cup, and add boiling water.

                  Im a tad cynical that Nestle doesnt add something to speed solubility though Den. :

                  Dry-freezing at 40 below? Wouldnt that intense cold air flow surely dry granules to a hard kinda stale tasting compound?

                  We keep harping on on this forum about the negative effects of exposing beans to oxygen, yet the need to de-gas the CO2.

                  I like, & support, your mad quest Dennis - it just seems that the science to achieve it will compromise the freshness. Because basically what youre striving to do is preserve a food product, and at the end of the day the process to achieve it compromises freshness.

                  Your thoughts? :-?

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                  • #10
                    Re: Making instant coffee

                    "Sublimation" (which I dont pretend to understand) is used in the freeze drying process Tony, whereby the ice is removed from the crystals.

                    I think that one of the benefits of using CP is that it doesnt allow much extraction of the acids, that are also responsible for the decaying process. I also think that if the end result is dry enough, this could help with preservation.

                    It would be nice to be able to speed up the evaporation process without introducing heat into the brew. Im thinking that might be possible with the use of a fan over a large surface area.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Making instant coffee

                      Originally posted by GrindOnDemand link=1221784243/0#8 date=1221791788

                      Dry-freezing at 40 below?  Wouldnt that intense cold air flow surely dry granules to a hard kinda stale tasting compound?
                      Thats what they call International Roast Caters Blend

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                      • #12
                        Re: Making instant coffee

                        Originally posted by beanflying link=1221784243/0#10 date=1221801714
                        Originally posted by GrindOnDemand link=1221784243/0#8 date=1221791788

                        Dry-freezing at 40 below?  Wouldnt that intense cold air flow surely dry granules to a hard kinda stale tasting compound?
                        Thats what they call International Roast Caters Blend
                        Not that it matters, but International Roast isnt freeze dried.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Making instant coffee

                          Originally posted by Dennis link=1221784243/0#9 date=1221792877

                          It would be nice to be able to speed up the evaporation process without introducing heat into the brew.  Im thinking that might be possible with the use of a fan over a large surface area.
                          Dennis,

                          If you have a vacuum pump handy.....and place the CP in a container and reduce the pressure from the nominal 14 psi to about a tenth of that..... the water will "boil off" at about 38C..... (vacuum distillation)

                          The only trick would be pumping out the volume of "steam" fast enough to maintain the reduced pressure :

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                          • #14
                            Re: Making instant coffee

                            Hi Dennis

                            it was more the stale (and normally burnt) taste Maybe I should have said Muckona instead

                            CP seems to be the more quality way to go from what I have read in the US sites. I actually used to like the local chicory flavoured version over warm milk not that I have had any for 20 years or so.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Making instant coffee

                              Originally posted by Dennis link=1221784243/0#9 date=1221792877
                              "Sublimation" (which I dont pretend to understand) is used in the freeze drying process Tony, whereby the ice is removed from the crystals.

                              I think that one of the benefits of using CP is that it doesnt allow much extraction of the acids, that are also responsible for the decaying process.  I also think that if the end result is dry enough, this could help with preservation.

                              It would be nice to be able to speed up the evaporation process without introducing heat into the brew.  Im thinking that might be possible with the use of a fan over a large surface area.
                              Dennis

                              You can evaporate water without introducing heat  by reducing pressure. Pure water boils at 100C at 1 bar, but addition of ions (such as salt) increases the boiling point. As an example, at a pressure of 0.26 bar, water boils at 69C.
                              You are right about the fan, it (or anything inducing air movement) will increase mass transfer and reduce evaporation, but it will also depend on the moisture of the air - works until equilibrium is reached. The larger the area, the better.

                              Good luck in producing a decent instant, the holy grail of offices worldwide....

                              Luis

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