My, my how the time does fly. In between this post and my last ... let's see, we had a touch of the flu; a strange orange crested bird started showing up at my feeders; mass quantities of food were consumed by extremely grateful people, and my brother announced that he and his are going up north for Christmas. This last was announced carefully, as if they thought I might pitch a fit. I did. But I waited till they left, in my own room. It's not the same without them here for Christmas. *sigh*
Oh yeah, and a whole lotta coffee has been roasted. Heh. I think I'm finally ready to give my two cents worth on the Z&D Home Roaster.
The first thing I noticed, which you can't really tell when you're roasting in the oven, is how much the beans expand. I took some "action pics" here during the process to show the changes. Click for big'uns.
It's definitely a process that needs to be tended to. In spite of roasting time guidelines, each is different, and you can't just assume roasting time for one bean will work for another.
As promised, it self-ventilates, so I can roast without smoking up the house. But it still smells like coffee roasting, and that's great. No, that's WONDERFUL. There are some smells that send me into nasal nirvana, and coffee roasting is right up there. Baking bread, cookies fresh out of the oven, bacon in the morning, and coffee - roasting grinding and brewing. My only complaint is that by the time roasting is done my nose has sent my mouth into overdrive-anticipation-mode. But most stuff I've read says the flavor is best if it's had a few hours or so to expand and breathe. Geeyod it's hard to wait. I have had to learn self-control. Not an easy task for me.
I'm sure enjoying experimenting with the various green beans I have here though, and I think I've made the hubs a convert. Actually, I may have created a monster. Now he doesn't want anything but fresh roasted. For now that's no problem. I've got quite a supply of samples and we're going through them all one by one. I'm doing two roasts of each kind - one dark and one medium/light. The individual flavor of the bean is definitely more pronounced a medium roast. I'm having a grand time tasting and making notes, deciding which ones I like best.
The only other complaint I have is that it's not easy to clean. We don't generally warrant running the dishwasher every day here, so if I want to roast more than once a day (am I getting obsessive???) I have to wash the thing by hand, and that's no easy task. But the destructions - including the instructional video - all really emphasize that you MUST clean it after each use. What a pain! You need all kinds of special tools and implements and my local store doesn't carry those kinds of small brushes.
I guess I can live with this small inconvenience. I have to say this has already proven to be the best birthday present a girl like me could get. I love love LOVE it.