Part 3 of our series All About Coffee continues with the roasting processes. Click the following links if you would like to read The Coffee Tree – Part 1 of “All About Coffee” or Harvesting, Milling and Packing Coffee – Part 2 of “All About Coffee”
Roasting Coffee - Green coffee beans contain acids, protein, and caffeine but lack flavor and taste. It is during the roasting process when the green coffee beans split, crack, pop, and sizzle to bring out all of its flavors and aromas.
Roasting temperatures can reach as high as 527 degrees Fahrenheit and as long as 30 minutes. Once roasted, each green coffee bean will lose between 18-23% of their density and increase in size by 35-60%.
The light straw green color of the coffee beans will transform into a shade of brown (light, medium, or brown) depending on the degree of roast. The longer the coffee roasts, the darker the bean will result and the less caffeine and acidity it contains.
When the correct temperature is reached the roasted coffee is quickly poured into a cooling tray to reduce the temperature and stop the coffee beans from any further cooking. The method as well as combination of how quickly the coffee beans are heated up and cooled down are all part of the flavor profile process. The same batch of green beans roasted two different ways can have a very different flavor.
Add the coffee origin, farming, harvesting method and storage process to the roasting profile and it is easy to see what a fine art great coffee flavor is. Simply put: The flavor of coffee is influenced from the seed to the brewing. Each part lends itself to the end result.