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Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

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  • Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

    I still havent modified my BBQ barrel yet *sigh* so that I can dump the roasted beans out fast instead of taking forever to pry open the smokin hot metal barrel with gloves and tools arrrgh!

    So this afternoon I roasted several batches of Nicaragua Highgrown Bold in the *gasp* popper.  I know,.. I said I was never going to use the popper to murder my beans again... but alas.. fear of not having any roasted beans tomorrow and desperation changes a persons thinking ya know.  

    I did five batches,.totalling 600g roasted beans. This took all afternoon as I waited for the popper to cool right down between batches and also did batches between running the kids around,.. going for milk and bread etc,.. as is the usual way I do my roasting.  :

    The first batch I did,.. my impatient self took over my thinking and I dumped 200g green in the popper  :.  The result was a very fast and very uneven roast.  Some beans at CS10 or 11 when others looked like they might not have even reached FC let alone SC.    So,. as is my usual cooling routine,.. I spread the beans out on the stone benchtop where they quickly get the final heat sucked right out of them,..and while there, I plucked out all the very darks and very lights,..50g of beans wasted. The roast then looks a little more even but still about 3 or 4 degrees on the CS scale which I know is not ideal.

    Second batch,... smaller amount of 125g.. I worked harder to agitate the beans more to keep them cooler by constantly stirring with wooden spoon handle. I also raised the popper by placing it in the metal collander. This worked well as it was a cold day here too and I could feel the air being pulled into the base of the popper (some of it passing over the colander walls/through the holes) and was very cool. The smaller roast too would have made things a little cooler. The roast was much longer and even.  Dumped, cooled and mixed with the last uneven batch.  Total batch looking a little better now.

    Third batch,..about the same result as the last batch and mixed this in with the first two batches..... looking mighty fine now.

    Last two batches were done late, in the cold (freezing here today) and in the dark,   .  I am guessing the external temp had a lot to do with the fact that these two batches had longer roasting times and had FC at around 5+mins and SC at almost 9mins. Not bad for a popper.  Both of these batches were very even,..looked awesome and I blended them two together and bagged them seperate from the first three batches. Not going to touch these ones until they are properly rested.

    About an hour ago, I decided the smell of the fresh roasts was too much to bear and because I had run out of roasted beans this afternoon,.. I ground up a double basket of the combined beans from the first 3 batches (about 5-6hrs post roast) and made myself a double latte. I know these will be better after resting 4 or 5 days,.. but this coffee was still better than most of the coffees I buy while out and about. It is awesome to know,. that I can just whip up a fresh batch of roasted coffee whenever I run low/out,.. and still get a very delish coffee a few hours later.  I love being able to do this,.. too much fun was had today I tellya.

    Gees......these are whoppin big beans these ones.

  • #2
    Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

    Hey Remy

    Try a quick release steel clips similar to those used in preserve jars for your drum

    I remember making one for a mate while working at BHP (long time ago)

    A drum about the 2/3 size of a 20 lt drum made of mild sheet steel
    Lid held by welded gate hinge and held closed in place by small wedge of timber
    2 x V stands with 2 steel wheels on each so drum can sit and rotate
    A pipe one end welded shut, the length of drum, open end fitted with gas fittings, holes drilled to suit in pipe for flame. (placed under drum)
    2 x handles for bean empty when roased (he said he used thick welders gloves for this) cos its hot

    From memory thats all it was

    He told me it worked fine for roasting coffee

    At the time I was not into coffee so I did not understand his passion
    Have not seen him for 20 years I wonder if he is still alive?


    • #3
      Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

      Hi Koffee Kosmo,.thanks for the ideas there. I might even be able to do something similar to the preserve jar clips maybe.

      This is what I have at the moment. But last roast,.I decided I liked my skin the way it is. It is way too risky trying to prize open the barrel when it is red hot. This barrel is hard to open when the metal is cool,.. heat it up and its almost impossible,..put that together with the rotisserie rod through the middle which is also securing the barrel in place with metal fastenings and the whole thing takes forever to get the beans out. I had to wrap the whole barrel in a towel last time,.. hold the thing between my knees just to be able to get some leverage to undo the metal fastenings,.. then with a screw driver and hammer,..tap the edge of the lid,..rotating it from side to side with each tap... frustrating or what,.. all the while the poor beans a dying.

      I should really just cut a hole in the lid with the Dremel perhaps and leave it on all the time.... and pour the beans out through the hole..... hmm....why didnt I think if doing that before?? probably because that would be too easy *sigh*.


      • #4
        Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

        Try and cut a flap similar to a prize barrel
        You know the ones that a beautifull girl pulls out the winning ticket
        The flap can be cut all the way accross if you like

        That way when you turn the drum the roasted beans can fall directly on to a steel plate or a container, straight from the BBQ without problems or burns.

        But place the beans quickly into a steel colander for cooling

        Koffee Kosmo


        • #5
          Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold


          If its any help, here is a picture of mine.
          Mine has a sliding door which allows for pretty fast dumping.
          Heat protective gloves are a must of course!


          • #6
            Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

            Personaly I would not do it on the rotis

            I would attach a rod type handle to the drum, make it long enough so the handle petrudes past and on on the side of the BBQ (no heat)
            I would control the turning by hand but only a side to side gentle roll
            or thust them if required.
            It only takes few minutes to roast coffee beans

            Lift the whole thing off by the handle when done and poor out contents

            You have full control , no machine is as advanced as the human hand


            • #7
              Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold


              It may only take a few minutes in a popper, but part of the idea of moving to the BBQ and a drum is to increase roast size AND time.

              Believe me, 20 minutes of turning, shaking and thrusting if required is a lot more effort than most people really want.

              I had to cut the power once mid roast for water related reasons and 10 minutes of that was plenty.

              I dont really see how turning by hand would be better.


              • #8
                Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

                Point Taken

                Its just that I have worked in cafes and kitchens
                Its a habit when cooking , lifting pots and frypans
                It may just come as second nature to me

                I am in thought mode
                I will try to design an easy way to roast coffee using pots

                Get back to you soon


                • #9
                  Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

                  Thanks guys,.. I really want/need to get this sorted.. and Ive kinda lost my mojo regarding it as it all seems too hard.  

                  Firstly,. I like the BBQ Barrel Rotisserie method(and why Im chasing it) for the following reasons;
                  1. Size of roast
                  2. The BBQ is convenient and sitting idle
                  3. Good easy controllable heat,. and temp gauge (first attempt was impressive)
                  4. The rotisserie works well,.. and the barrel changes directions every few rotations.

                  So what is stopping me fixing this barrel?  
                  The ends (one fixed, one comes off) are gal by the looks of it,..and Im not entirely sure if it is a good idea to roast my beans with gal, Ive been draggin the chain a bit in the hope that I can find something stainless steel that I could adapt for the ends, or maybe use the stainless steel colanders somehow,.which I have already.

                  The centre section is great size-wise and has the baffles inside etc,..however despite that,.. its not as ridged as it looks and surprisingly its very easy to accidently knock out of shape,. so I would hesitate in cutting a hole in that for the release of beans (though that would be a great way to do it) because it would weaken the structure of this stuff more and I think it would just bend all over the place.

                  I have thought about how to do this for weeks and weeks and I am getting to the point where it might be easier to bite the bullet and order a barrel with bean release door from the US. I just dont know,.. still thinking what to do.


                  • #10
                    Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

                    Ive sat for many, many hours roasting a full lamb on a spit but these days 15 minutes of stirring beans by hand was getting to me.
                    Hence my new corretto.

                    fatboy I love the sliding door.


                    • #11
                      Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

                      I have PM Fatboy with a design/plan for a modified pot Coffee Roaster to look it over
                      If he likes it i will post it


                      • #12
                        Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

                        Fatboy thats pretty neat roaster 1 I would be proud to own. Wouldve loved to make this sort of roaster, but no S/S perforated plate at work and that stuff is exspensive.


                        • #13
                          Re: Popper roasted Nicaragua Highgrown Bold

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