I've decided I want to try roasting my own coffee here at home. I want to be able to use terms like "first crack". More importantly, I want to taste really truly fresh-roasted beans, and have the satisfaction of knowing I did it.
I've been reading on the net, and I found a couple of posts where regular folx like me have tried this (as opposed to the uber-knowledgeable barista-types with big budgets). It sounds like something I could at least try at home on the cheap. Then, if I like it, maybe I'll invest in some gadgetry.
There's the oven method here and the skillet method here, and this one uses a special popcorn popper. And here's something from Engadget on converting your popcorn popper into a coffee roaster. I don't know if I'm up for all that. I think I'll go with the oven method. And I better do it soon while it's still cool enough here to open the windows, which all the destructions I've read say is extremely important. I gather a lot of smoke is generated.
The smoke issue led me to this gadget ....
The Smoke-Free Home Roaster Kit from Zach & Dani's. Smoke-free, it says. That would be cool. The kit comes with the roaster, 3 bags of beans, an instructional video, and optional grinder.
For $150, it sounds like a pretty good deal, especially if it really IS smoke-free. Then I'd be able to use it here even in the summer months.
But I can't find any testimonials or posts about this roaster. Has anybody used it? Any words of wisdom? Tips in general on roasting your own?