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Thread: Soft or hard beans - how to tell?

  1. #1
    Member skeevs's Avatar
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    Soft or hard beans - how to tell?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hey guys,
    I read from an article online that if the beans centre is further apart then those are soft beans.
    I have the India EH , Ethiopian gambella and Peru Ceja. The Indian EH look like hard beans to me. Is that correct and what about the other beans I mentioned ?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member Jackster's Avatar
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    I can tell as soon as I start winding the handle on the lido...
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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeevs View Post
    I read from an article online that if the beans centre is further apart then those are soft beans.
    AARRGGHHH...
    the Internet is full of misinformation written by bored people and then regurgitated by others who are often in climates where it's too cold to go outside. There seems to be a new barrage of rubbish every Aussie summer.

    Rule of thumb.

    All Arabica beans are hard except those grown on islands which are typically grown at a lower altitude and closer to the ocean.

    Hawaii, Jamaica, Australia are soft.
    You are safe to assume that everything else is hard.
    (Indo breaks that rule and are harder mostly due to the altitude).

    Or better still assume every Arabica you ever roast is "hard" and you'll only be wrong very few times in your life.

    Soft beans will need less heat to get to the same roast depth, you'll see them transition faster than "normal" and adjust to suit.

    Ignore the hard/soft thingo, you are always best off roasting something new using your favourite profile/method and then tasting it, making a change, and roasting to suit.
    bosco, dan77, Dimal and 7 others like this.

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    Member skeevs's Avatar
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    Soft or hard beans - how to tell?

    Andy,

    Thanks for such a detailed explanation to this. It does make it easier for me to understand now. The article did talk about low vs high altitude as well so my bad on making it sound overly simple. I was trying to figure out if there was a quick way to tell a bean by just its outer characteristics. However seeing the beans I have they all looked about the same

    I was trying to figure out which profiles would suit the different beans. I’ve mostly been using the P2B profile on the Behmor as my go-to profile. Only once or twice have I used the P1, P3 or P4.

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    Member skeevs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackster View Post
    I can tell as soon as I start winding the handle on the lido...
    I thought this reference table was a good indicator of beans sourced from Andys beanbay.

    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/home-roas...-roasting.html

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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    I'm not a big fan of the Behmor manual, it has some useful information and a fair amount of useless information too and it's mighty hard to read. The hard/soft section is one of the bits in there I really don't like (as you can guess).

    Arabica beans grow in a very narrow altitude range, again, the actual altitude really doesn't matter and is mostly used as marketing fluff.

    Each year I roast 100's of beans for the first time, I always use my "normal" roast profile and then adjust to suit. If the bean is a long way from my normal I'll see that in the first 5 minutes of the initial roast and can make an adjustment at that point to better suit the bean. It's very rare not to end-up with something good on the first roast and with tweaking and experience with that bean you can make it better.

    Use your taste buds to determine how you will roast something and you won't go wrong.

  7. #7
    Member skeevs's Avatar
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    Soft or hard beans - how to tell?

    Behmor Coffee Roaster
    Great advise Andy, thank you

    On that “normal profile” you mentioned, do you go full on the gas pedal right from the start or slow ramp up instead ?
    Last edited by skeevs; 1st February 2019 at 02:22 PM.



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