Latest Posts

  1. New Postcards. Quakers: Resistant to Roast

    New Postcards. Quakers: Resistant to Roast

    Our new postcards. Look for one in your next order.

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  2. FreshRoast Basics Class at Sweet Maria's

    FreshRoast Basics Class at Sweet Maria's

    Sign up for our FreshRoast Class

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  3. Bullet R1 Roaster Meet Up

    Bullet R1 Roaster Meet Up

    Join us for a meet-up where we will discuss the very popular Aillio Bullet R1 coffee roaster.

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  4. Six Under Six - July 2018

    Six Under Six - July 2018

    Six great coffees. All under six bucks.

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  5. Video: A Cooler Way to Cool Your Behmor Roast

    Video: A Cooler Way to Cool Your Behmor Roast

    Cool your coffee faster by removing the drum.

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  6. Aillio Bullet R1 Support

    Aillio Bullet R1 Support

    Need a little help with your Bullet R1? We are here for you.

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  7. Intro to Home Roasting Class

    Intro to Home Roasting Class

    Sign up for this roasting basics class. It's going to be a lot of fun.

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  8. Sweet Maria's Featured on The Coffee Podcast

    Sweet Maria's Featured on The Coffee Podcast

    Listen in and share with a friend that needs a little motivation getting started with roasting on their own.

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  9. Hot Rod Home Coffee Roasters: The Spirit of Invention

    Hot Rod Home Coffee Roasters: The Spirit of Invention

    For some people who roast their own coffee, off-the-shelf home coffee roasting appliances don't cut it.

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  10. Air Popper Modifications -Adding a Thermometer

    Air Popper Modifications -Adding a Thermometer

    A thermometer can help you establish a more consistent roasting routine. Adding a thermometer to your air popper measures the temperature of the forced air heat flow after it has passed through the beans.

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  11. Gas Oven Roasting Method

    Gas Oven Roasting Method

    What You Need: A gas oven. A perforated pan, a vegetable steamer, or a stainless steel wire mesh collander.

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  12. How to make a Thermometer Clip

    How to make a Thermometer Clip

    Do you really need a thermometer clip? Well, not really, but if the dial face is moving around while you are cranking, it makes it hard to read.

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Air Popper Modifications -Timing Roasts

Air Popper Modifications -Timing Roasts

If you choose to alter your air popper you are assume the risk that it will no longer work as it was designed to, that it might not work at all, that you might injure yourself in performing these tasks or in using the altered device. This information is here for you to peruse, but Sweet Maria's accepts NO responsibility in what the results may be.

Time your Roasts with a Darkroom Timer

When I started roasting with an air popper, I found that timing the roasts was difficult. If I watched the clock on the wall I would lose track of the minutes, and it wasn't very accurate anyway. If I used a timer on my watch, I would forget to stop it, or even look at it, during the critical moment when the roast is done and you need to be dumping beans and agitating them. Kitchen timers are available in both analog and digital, but I would forget to stop them too.

Then I remembered all the photo darkroom equipment I had in the basement, and my old Gra-Lab darkroom timer. The popper plugs into the timer and is turned on and off by it. I turn the popper on and off with one switch on the timer, so the actual roast time is recorded nomatter. I actually own a fancier digital timer for photo purposes, but the old Gra-Lab is a wonderful workhorse.

Another advantage to using the timer is that you can dial in a particular roast time and, all other things being equal, you can reproduce your favorite air popper roasts without paying attention too much! Remember, roasting is a potential fire hazard, so use some sense and never leave the room when you're roasting.

Gra-Labs are readily available at used darkroom equipment shops at very reasonable prices. Like the old Bell telephones, these are built to last forever!