Thursday, April 12, 2018

How I Learn... also, More on Coffee

I learn best through hands on experience, which is probably why coffee has largely baffled me until recently. Sure, I know I like it. Usually. I often love it, even. But what what kinds are best? What's the difference between light and dark roast? Why are there so many freaking kinds of coffee? What the heck is even going on?

I'm finally getting a handle on it.

Like I said, I learn best through hands on experience, so my learning process is taking the form of roasting my own coffee beans. I was introduced to the idea of roasting my own coffee by a friend who tried roasting his own coffee for the first time recently, and was intrigued. Then I tasted the results, and I knew that I absolutely had to get my hands on the same green coffee beans he had roasted.

Fast forward to now, and I've finally figured out a few basic things such as what's going on with light versus dark roast. In particular, how you get one or the other (turns out it's all about how long the beans are roasted, not what kind of beans you get), and which one has more caffeine. I think I've figured out how to roast the particular beans I have to perfection, and I look forward to experimenting with other kinds of green coffee beans in the future. After all, I'm pretty sure that different beans roast differently, so I'm sure there's plenty more for me to learn.

freshly roasted coffee beans next to ground coffee

Monday, April 9, 2018

Brewing Green Coffee: take one

early and later during brewing
Just the other day I learned that green coffee is a thing. Intrigued, I decided that I must try brewing this for myself, particularly I already happened to have green coffee beans on hand.

The recipe I used:

1 part green coffee beans
3 parts water

Bring to a rolling boil, then simmer for 12 minutes.

Sad to say, my first effort at green coffee was somewhat less than a stunning success.

I think my mistake lay in using too little water for the pot I used. I had half a cup of beans to one and a half cups of water, which came out to being about an inch of water in the smallest pot I had available. In the end I had a little less than half a cup of green coffee to show for my efforts, and it was too bitter for my taste. Green coffee is apparently going to be bitter in any event, but I suspect this was more bitter than it would have been if I hadn't lost over two thirds to evaporation.

what little green coffee I got out of it
Rather than being disappointed I just see this as a learning experience. Ok, so I'm a little disappointed that I didn't at least find it drinkable (even with honey added), but I'm not really surprised either. This seems like the kind of thing that takes experimentation and practice, and now I know that a better water to pot size ratio is essential. Which wasn't entirely a surprise, although I misjudged how much evaporation would happen.

As to why green coffee is a thing? I'm personally experimenting with it just to try coffee in another form. A brief perusal of information regarding green coffee will reveal people talking about all kinds of health benefits, not to mention that green coffee contains more caffeine than roasted coffee. Just like a light roast contains more caffeine than a dark roast, because roasting reduces the caffeine. I haven't been interested enough to take in all the health benefits of it, but that info is out there for anyone who's interested.

saving the beans after

Have you tried green coffee? Did you like it? Or have you made your own, and if so how did you do it? I'm full of curiosity. :)