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Thread: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

  1. #1
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    First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Got my Behmor today delivered to Perth. Thanks Andy! Dry burning right now.

    I need some advice please on the difference between soft and hard beans. In the Behmor manual it refers to hard bean and soft bean settings. Im not sure how to determine if my green beans are hard or soft. I understand hard beans are grown at higher altitudes. Is there a rule of thumb on ths? For example Andy sent me 2.5Kg of Peru and I ordered today some Ethiopian Gambella. Any tips on knowing which are hard and which are soft?

    Cheers,

  2. #2
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Gday Doublee,

    There really isnt any Rule of Thumb as such because variances between Hard Beans from different Estates, Regions, etc will probably require a different roasting approach between them anyway. Ditto for Soft Beans...

    Basically, Hard Beans require more thermal energy input to ensure that beans roast all the way through and the converse for Soft Beans. In terms of actual roasting time though, this might be identical given that the energy input will be different.

    Of the two beans you have mentioned, the Gambella is probably going to be a bit harder than the Peru variety but thats not certain. Most new Behmor owners seem to settle on the P2 profile for most beans and then vary the Batch Size and Roast Time to arrive at a finished product that does justice to the beans and the brew quality in the cup.

    Start off with small batches of 120-130g at P2, 1/4lb weight and then vary the duration from A through D and make a decision on which turns out the best. Theres no real by the book method as it happens, you just have to experiment, keep good records for future reference and enjoy the whole process. Even outcome failures are OK. It all goes into the memory bank of dos and donts for future roasts..... 8-) :)

    Mal.

  3. #3
    Senior Member sidewayss's Avatar
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Congrats on your Behmor arrival,
    What you can do is make notes of one roast of Peru and one roast of Gambella using the same settings, and then note down the differences in the finished product.
    That way you can make changes like adding more beans next time if you want a lighter roast or less beans for a darker roast with same setting.
    From what i gather, P2 is a popular setting.
    A diary only costs a few dollars and you can write down the type of bean, quantity, time to first crack, time to second crack, humidity and colour of roast at the end etc and right through to keeping notes of the tastings.
    A 2.5kg of green beans gives you plenty of play to get it right.
    Once you nail it, you enjoy roasting for what it is, revealing about yourself and the fulfillment of the senses.

    8-) Gary

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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Thanks Mal and Gary that is really helpful advice. The essence seems to be test n try etc which is half the fun.

    I did my first roast earlier -1/4 lb of Columbian Supremo I had been given. Roasted at P4. Looks good - nice dark colour. Hopefully it taste okay. I will try tomorrow and each day on to learn what is best.
    Will get on to the Peru tomorrow.
    Roaster seems really good.

  5. #5
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    I reckon the Behmor Roaster is a little beauty too.... 8-)

    Sounds like youre getting some good results there already mate and your approach is spot on. Dont forget to come back with some photos of the end results and your impressions of the end result in the cup. Were a nosey bunch Im afraid plus we all like to join in on the fun.... ;)

    Happy roasting Doublee.... ;D

    Mal.

  6. #6
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Quote Originally Posted by 5B414C4D5F49515B5B280 link=1291639566/2#2 date=1291646847
    Congrats on your Behmor arrival,
    * * * * *What you can do is make notes of one roast of Peru and one roast of Gambella using the same settings, and then note down the differences in the finished product.
    * * * * That way you can make changes like adding more beans next time if you want a lighter roast or less beans for a darker roast with same setting.

    * * * * From what i gather, P2 is a popular setting.
    * * * * A diary only costs a few dollars and you can write down the type of bean, quantity, time to first crack, time to second crack, humidity and colour of roast at the end etc and right through to keeping notes of the tastings.

    8-) Gary
    I highly recommend using software to keep track of Behmor roasts. It is called Behmor Thing, and it is written to run under Windows.

    This FREE software is written by a Behmor user in California - his name is Ira. You can cut and paste notes from prior roasts, and easily duplicate a prior roast.

    In the past, I worried about which program to use for various beans. Based on other Behmor users recommendations, I decided to simplify my life, and learn to roast using only one program.

    For my Behmor roasts, I use the P3 program almost exclusively. The only exception is that I use P1 for Yemen Mokha or Hawaii Mocha.

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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Thanks Rick, I had read your post in another forum was going to follow your advice regarding the P3 profile and stretching out the time between 1st & 2nd crack. I like your method of pulling the beans out quickly as some of my roasts have been ruined in the time just entering the cooling phase. My Behmor doesnt have a stop button so I presume that means hitting the off button.

    I am using the Behmor Thing which is helpful.

    I am having mixed results. I will post details later. My main issues to date have been roasting to dark and then roasting to light. The Peru has been good but I have made a mess of some Kenyan AA and Brazilian - bloody awful. Actually tastes burnt/charcholly.

    I havent to date really got the flavour range in the beans (drinking expresso) that I love.


  8. #8
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Quote Originally Posted by 527963747A7373160 link=1291639566/6#6 date=1292599893
    I havent to date really got the flavour range in the beans (drinking expresso) that I love.
    Gday Doublee.... :)

    Dont get disheartened at all mate. If youve never home-roasted coffee before then there is a learning curve involved. Ricks advice above and in another thread sound pretty good where the Behmor is concerned, especially the bit about getting to know one Profile option really, really well. This will cut down on the variables considerably and allow you to start producing results that you can enjoy.

    Maybe stick with small batches to kick off with and when youve got that nailed down pretty well, try the next batch size up and so it goes. Weve all been through this process to a lesser or greater extent but you will get there mate. Keep good records so you have a reference for what works and what doesnt; itll become your Bible....

    All the best ;)
    Mal.

  9. #9
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Thanks Mal. Tried a small batch of Ethopian Gambella I roasted 5 days ago. Very happy with that. I have a sense the flavours will develop over the next few days. When I added milk to my double it almost tasted like hot chocolate! Very nice and interesting.

    One of the main pleasures I am having with the roasting is enjoying the involvement with my 15 yr old son - who is really enjoying learning about roasting and espresso drinking!



  10. #10
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: First Time Roaster - Hard Bean Soft Bean?

    Behmor Coffee Roaster
    Excellent news mate... [smiley=thumbsup.gif]

    Both regarding the coffee and that your young bloke is starting to develop "the" passion too. Can never have too many CoffeeSnobs.... 8-)

    Mal.



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