How hard could roasting beans at home really be? Sam and George go head-to-head in a coffee roasting competition to find out, and Candy Schibli, the founder and head roaster of Southeastern Coffee Roastery, provides expert advice.
Here are the beans.
All right. So today we are attempting to roast coffee beans ourselves at home, in a frying pan using our chemistry knowledge.
And this is a throw down a challenge to see who can roast the better beans. Me…
…or me. It’s definitely me.
Okay. So to prepare for this challenge, I read a bunch of coffee, roasting blogs, and then really went down the YouTube rabbit hole. I think I have a plan to win.
I did absolutely no research for this. So I am going to just completely wing it and see what happens.
I’m really doing a terrible job. I’m already burning the outside of the beans.
Are these supposed to end up looking like normal coffee beans?
Hmm. I don’t think it’s working so much.
These are possibly the most unevenly roasted beans I have ever seen in my life.
This is what professionally roasted coffee looks like. Look how even that is. And then look at mine, professional mine.
So about 10 minutes on the grill, they were still greenish yellow. I bring them in here. I crank up the heat.
Yeah. These are really unevenly roasted.
Well, I am definitely not winning this challenge with these beans. So I’m going to try again.
Today I have maybe okay is my label on this one. And then this is my oopsie.
You taste yours first and then I’ll I’ll show, I’ll show you what I, okay.
This is not terrible.
Now taste tastes the oops one.
I’m so afraid to taste this.
It smells a little burnt.
Yeah. Like it really does not taste like coffee. To me. It has a terrible aftertaste. It’s really bad. It’s not pleasant.
I screwed it up from beginning to end. And this is my, this is my cup.
I don’t know if you can tell, but it’s a lot lighter than our stuff.
Yeah it looks pretty weak.
Okay. Let me taste it.
You know what? That’s not half bad.
If I didn’t know any better, I would be like, hh man, they brewed this wrong, but it doesn’t taste like I burnt it.
So we both made mediocre to straight up bad coffee, but it got us thinking.
Could we reach out to a professional coffee, roaster, someone who does this for a living and get some tips or tricks or something to make home roasting in a frying pan, actually work.
I decided to call up someone who actually knows what they’re doing and I’m doing this interview without George to make sure I win.
Candy Schibli is the founder of Southeastern Roastery where she is also the head roaster.
First of all, let me commend you on your exploration. I love it.
That’s like a really nice way of saying like here’s a participation trophy.
Was there anything when you started roasting, maybe it was during the process itself that you were so surprised by?
Probably what surprised me most, the actual sound there’s a sound component and a smell component that goes along with coffee roasting, they’re really distinct cracks and coffee that indicate a point in the roasting process.
And like at what point those cracks happen and how frequent they are, how abundant they are. They like roll slowly. If they’re like really, really popping, you know.
That’s the thing about coffee roasting that I found so interesting is that there’s a very fine line between something tasting really good and then taking it too far and having it be really gross.
It’s generally a few seconds.
Yeah. That’s so much pressure.
There’s so much that could go wrong so quickly because of all the stuff that’s in a coffee bean. So what is that stuff?
They’re mostly made up of carbohydrates like cellulose and soluble carbs, like sucrose and glucose. They’re also made up of lipids, proteins and the