Posted Fri Sep 13, 2013, 11:50am Subject: Re: Presto Poplite Gourmet Hot Air Popper
Just wanted to check back in with an update.
I bought a $5 Presto PopLite & $1 glass chimney from the local thrift store. I removed the plastic popcorn chute & am using screw-down aluminum window stops to stabilize the chimney. (They do not hold the chimney in any way; they only keep it from wobbling around.)
I ran my first 1/3 lb of Yirgacheffe in my Presto. It took me a few tries to get the right amount of beans in the chamber. I overloaded it at first & it shut itself off after about 10 seconds with a puff of smoke. I was worried that I'd burned out the heating element, but after removing the beans & letting it cool for a minute or two, it started back up.
I tried again, this time using only about an ounce of beans. This wasn't enough beans & they started flying out of the glass chimney. I kept adding enough until they would just slowly tumble around.
With 1400 watts, this thing roasts very quickly! Since this is my first time air roasting, I wasn't familiar with what to expect from either 'first crack' or 'second crack'. I can report that 2nd crack immediately follows 1st crack, with little-to-no break between them! Because of this, my first 1/3 lb batch came out a little darker & oilier than I normally like. Even with all of the trial & error, it only took me about an hour to roast my first batch. I expect my next time will be about half that.
It tastes great! Just as good as the $15/lb fresh roast I've been buying! I only get around to brewing drip coffee on the weekends, so this 1/3 lb should last me about 3 weekends. I'm very pleased with this little setup!
(Click for larger image)
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