crystals II

Since you all (well, you know who you are) answered my crystal vs. glass question with such clarity, I think it’s time for another question related to crystals (of the Folger’s variety): how do they make instant coffee? Obviously it’s not just a bunch of smashed up coffee beans; it’s some kind of “reconstituted” product (bleh!). Anyone know the nitty-gritty of how this is done? (And yes, if anyone knows what those Folger’s crystals are for, please do tell.)

Its freeze dried coffee. I am not sure on the specifics, but usually it involves freezing the liquid, then applying a vacuum to evaporate the water, and leave the good stuff, etc. Sorry if this isnt that great :). I dont know what the crystals are though.

I couldn’t swear to it (i.e. WAG alert! See the sig.), but freeze-dried coffee was a Big Deal when it first came out, at least according to the ads. That suggests that previous versions of instant coffee were made some other way. Here comes the WAG: I know that a lot of concentrates are made by spraying the hot solution into a current of hot air, so the water evaporates. Coffee could be concentrated the same way, then dried completely in trays and ground to powder.

It doesn’t really matter; instant tastes pretty horrible anyway.

Bob the Random Expert
“If we don’t have the answer, we’ll make one up.”

Just to clrify, freeze dried means just that.A frozen coffee or other solution is exposed to high vacuum where the water evaporates and a solid is left behind. It’s probably how they prepare things like insulin and interferon, for storage as solids.