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Thread: High altitude cooking

  1. #1
    Karen Lewis Guest

    Default High altitude cooking

    I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    somewhere.


  2. #2
    critters & me in azusa, ca Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On Aug 17, 9:18*am, "Karen Lewis" <ks...@earthlink.net> wrote:
    > I mean really high altitude. *Like about 10,000 feet elevation. *I tried to
    > bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. *The high altitude suggestions
    > are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL * I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    > but prepared foods just don't come out right. *I hope some of you geniuses
    > can give me some hints. *Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    > somewhere.



    where are you? in the andes?

  3. #3
    Dan Abel Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    In article <[email protected]> ,
    "Karen Lewis" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    > bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    > are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    > but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    > can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    > somewhere.


    OK, I gotta ask. Where are you that's at 10,000 feet? We have a few
    places here in California at 10,000, but not many people live up there,
    and I can't imagine any who would live there all year.

    --
    Dan Abel
    Petaluma, California USA
    [email protected]

  4. #4
    Nancy Young Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    critters & me in azusa, ca wrote:

    > On Aug 17, 9:18 am, "Karen Lewis" <ks...@earthlink.net> wrote:
    >> I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I
    >> tried to bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high
    >> altitude suggestions are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok
    >> and figured out cake mixes, but prepared foods just don't come out
    >> right. I hope some of you geniuses can give me some hints. Hope we
    >> have a cook from Vail, CO in here somewhere.

    >
    >
    > where are you? in the andes?


    I looked it up, Vail Mountain goes up to some 14,000' ... pretty darned
    high.

    nancy

  5. #5
    Steve B Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking


    "Dan Abel" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > In article <[email protected]> ,
    > "Karen Lewis" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried
    >> to
    >> bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    >> are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake
    >> mixes,
    >> but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you
    >> geniuses
    >> can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    >> somewhere.

    >
    > OK, I gotta ask. Where are you that's at 10,000 feet? We have a few
    > places here in California at 10,000, but not many people live up there,
    > and I can't imagine any who would live there all year.
    >
    > --
    > Dan Abel
    > Petaluma, California USA
    > [email protected]


    We went to 10,500 feet Sunday to rescue a friend who had been thrown from a
    horse and broke his shoulder. 10,000 feet is actually common. Living there
    year round is a lifestyle in itself, getting food and wood laid in during
    summer, and having a snowmobile, or good snowshoes to get in and out in the
    winter. I would not want to do it year round. We occasionally go to our
    cabin at 7,300 during the winter, but only infrequently. Our friend's cabin
    is at 10,500 and that's too high for my taste. Only accessible about four
    or five months a year.

    Steve

    visit my blog at http://cabgbypasssurgery.com
    free books while they last!




  6. #6
    sf Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On Tue, 17 Aug 2010 10:18:43 -0600, "Karen Lewis"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    >bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    >are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    >but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    >can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    >somewhere.


    Notbob is up there with you at 8 or 9 thousand. With any luck, he'll
    notice this thread.

    You must have one heck of a pair of lungs on you. Do you run
    marathons at sea level?

    --
    I love cooking with wine.
    Sometimes I even put it in the food.

  7. #7
    Christine Dabney Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On Tue, 17 Aug 2010 13:25:00 -0700, sf <[email protected]> wrote:

    >On Tue, 17 Aug 2010 10:18:43 -0600, "Karen Lewis"
    ><[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    >>bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    >>are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    >>but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    >>can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    >>somewhere.

    >
    >Notbob is up there with you at 8 or 9 thousand. With any luck, he'll
    >notice this thread.
    >
    >You must have one heck of a pair of lungs on you. Do you run
    >marathons at sea level?


    Okay...

    I am not at 10,000 feet when I am in NM, but at 6500 feet, so I can
    understand a bit...

    Are you there temporarily, or permanently? If you are there
    permanently, I suggest that you get a book called Pie in the
    Sky...which has to do with high altitude baking.

    In the meantime, you might need to set your oven temp to 25 degrees
    higher, for when you bake or roast something. And you will have to
    cook things longer.

    If you are baking from scratch, the protein structure of what you are
    baking needs to heightened. To that end, I usually add two more
    tablespoons of flour, and occasionally one extra egg.

    Leavening can be tricky at that altitude. Many high altitude guides
    suggest cutting the leavening..but I am not recalling by how much.

    For the time being, look up high altitude cooking on Google. Put in a
    qualifier for above 10,000 feet.

    Maybe Arri will speak up as well.

    Christine
    --
    http://nightstirrings.blogspot.com

  8. #8
    Karen Lewis Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    We live up here permanently. We love it, of course. It is not the easiest
    living and yes we spend most of the summer getting ready for winter. We
    have to have 4wd vehicles and a big front end plow on the pick-up, but it is
    not so hard to get to the highway most of the time. Just when there is a 7
    foot snowfall. LOL
    Baking up here is a joy! The yeast rises like crazy. You can't start
    sourdough though. There is not enough yeast in the air to get it going. I
    start it with a pkg of yeast, but it lasts forever.
    I also have to add extra liquid to most cakes and cookies, and even to pie
    dough. It is so dry up here. I have had some help from the extension
    office. They have several booklets on high altitude cooking.
    I am used to the fact that pasta takes 30 minutes to cook and potatoes an
    hour. Water must boil at about 180 degrees.
    I usually just nuke a bunch of potatoes and then use them up however I like.
    I am learning, but hope to get some more good pointers from all you guys.

    >
    > Are you there temporarily, or permanently? If you are there
    > permanently, I suggest that you get a book called Pie in the
    > Sky...which has to do with high altitude baking.
    >
    > In the meantime, you might need to set your oven temp to 25 degrees
    > higher, for when you bake or roast something. And you will have to
    > cook things longer.
    >
    > If you are baking from scratch, the protein structure of what you are
    > baking needs to heightened. To that end, I usually add two more
    > tablespoons of flour, and occasionally one extra egg.
    >
    > Leavening can be tricky at that altitude. Many high altitude guides
    > suggest cutting the leavening..but I am not recalling by how much.
    >
    > For the time being, look up high altitude cooking on Google. Put in a
    > qualifier for above 10,000 feet.
    >
    > Maybe Arri will speak up as well.
    >
    > Christine
    > --
    > http://nightstirrings.blogspot.com



  9. #9
    Victor Sack Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    Karen Lewis <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    > bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    > are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    > but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    > can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    > somewhere.


    A pressure cooker is considered to be a very useful tool for
    high-altitude cooking.

    Here are some useful hints from the USDA:
    <http://www.fsis.usda.gov/factsheets/high_altitude_cooking_and_food_safety/index.asp>

    Victor

  10. #10
    [email protected] Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On Tue, 17 Aug 2010 10:18:43 -0600, "Karen Lewis"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    >bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    >are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    >but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    >can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    >somewhere.


    There's always the Cooking School of Aspen, and the Savory Inn and
    Cooking School (Vail/Aspen).

    -- Larry

  11. #11
    gloria.p Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    Nancy Young wrote:
    > critters & me in azusa, ca wrote:
    >
    >> On Aug 17, 9:18 am, "Karen Lewis" <ks...@earthlink.net> wrote:
    >>> I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I
    >>> tried to bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high
    >>> altitude suggestions are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok
    >>> and figured out cake mixes, but prepared foods just don't come out
    >>> right. I hope some of you geniuses can give me some hints. Hope we
    >>> have a cook from Vail, CO in here somewhere.

    >>
    >>
    >> where are you? in the andes?

    >
    > I looked it up, Vail Mountain goes up to some 14,000' ... pretty darned
    > high.
    >
    > nancy



    No one lives at the top. The town of Vail is at ~8100 feet with lots
    of ski lifts going to the top. It takes a while for your body to adjust
    to the altitude--the air pressure is lower and there's less oxygen. You
    develop more red blood cells to carry oxygen. It takes most people about
    six weeks and most of it is lost if you go to sea level for 2 weeks.
    You get winded very easily when you exercise or otherwise exert until
    your body adapts.

    An important factor in cooking at altitude is that for every 1000 ft.
    above sea level, water boils at 2 degrees cooler temperature. We are at
    ~5600 ft. and the temp of boiling water is ~200 degrees, meaning it
    takes longer to boil potatoes, pasta, etc. (The water boils at a cooler
    temperature.) All the temperature and gas laws you learned in high
    school physics apply. Because of the decreased air pressure, baked
    goods rise with less leavening. Relearning to cook is an interesting
    experience.

    For the OP, Karen, the Extension Service at CSU has some literature with
    information about high altitude cooking.

    gloria p

  12. #12
    gloria.p Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    posted and emailed:


    Karen Lewis wrote:
    > We live up here permanently.


    Karen:

    Where is "up here"? There are a few of us on rfc who live in Colorado.
    We are just outside of Denver at 5600-5800 ft. but that doesn't affect
    cooking nearly as much as your 10,000 ft. altitude.

    gloria p

  13. #13
    Nancy Young Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    gloria.p wrote:
    > Nancy Young wrote:
    >> critters & me in azusa, ca wrote:
    >>
    >>> On Aug 17, 9:18 am, "Karen Lewis" <ks...@earthlink.net> wrote:
    >>>> I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I
    >>>> tried to bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high
    >>>> altitude suggestions are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok
    >>>> and figured out cake mixes, but prepared foods just don't come out
    >>>> right. I hope some of you geniuses can give me some hints. Hope we
    >>>> have a cook from Vail, CO in here somewhere.


    >>> where are you? in the andes?

    >>
    >> I looked it up, Vail Mountain goes up to some 14,000' ... pretty
    >> darned high.
    >>

    > No one lives at the top. The town of Vail is at ~8100 feet with lots
    > of ski lifts going to the top.


    That makes sense. I was just looking to see just how high
    that mountain was!

    > It takes a while for your body to
    > adjust to the altitude--the air pressure is lower and there's less
    > oxygen. You develop more red blood cells to carry oxygen. It takes
    > most people about six weeks and most of it is lost if you go to sea
    > level for 2 weeks. You get winded very easily when you exercise or
    > otherwise exert until your body adapts.


    Yikes. I know teams try to prepare themselves physically for
    the Mile High Stadium.

    > An important factor in cooking at altitude is that for every 1000 ft.
    > above sea level, water boils at 2 degrees cooler temperature. We are
    > at ~5600 ft. and the temp of boiling water is ~200 degrees, meaning it
    > takes longer to boil potatoes, pasta, etc. (The water boils at a
    > cooler temperature.) All the temperature and gas laws you learned in
    > high school physics apply. Because of the decreased air pressure,
    > baked goods rise with less leavening. Relearning to cook is an
    > interesting experience.


    Very interesting. Thanks.

    nancy

  14. #14
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    In article <[email protected]> ,
    "Karen Lewis" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I mean really high altitude. Like about 10,000 feet elevation. I tried to
    > bake a frozen pizza last night and failed. The high altitude suggestions
    > are for " over 3,000 feet". LOL I do cakes ok and figured out cake mixes,
    > but prepared foods just don't come out right. I hope some of you geniuses
    > can give me some hints. Hope we have a cook from Vail, CO in here
    > somewhere.


    This won't work for pizzas (but a toaster oven might!).

    Pressure cookers are your friend...
    --
    Peace! Om

    Web Albums: <http://picasaweb.google.com/OMPOmelet>
    *Only Irish *coffee provides in a single glass all four *essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine, sugar *and fat. --Alex Levine

  15. #15
    Karen Lewis Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    I live up in Coal Creek Canyon. At the top. Great view of the divide when we
    go down to Nederland.

    "gloria.p" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > posted and emailed:
    >
    >
    > Karen Lewis wrote:
    >> We live up here permanently.

    >
    > Karen:
    >
    > Where is "up here"? There are a few of us on rfc who live in Colorado.
    > We are just outside of Denver at 5600-5800 ft. but that doesn't affect
    > cooking nearly as much as your 10,000 ft. altitude.
    >
    > gloria p



  16. #16
    sandi Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    "Karen Lewis" <[email protected]> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > I live up in Coal Creek Canyon. At the top. Great view of the
    > divide when we go down to Nederland.


    Love it in that neck of the woods!!!

    LUCKY YOU!

  17. #17
    notbob Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On 2010-08-17, Karen Lewis <[email protected]> wrote:

    I'm jes outside Buena Vista CO, at about 8K ft. Love it! Driving
    about 40 miles North to Leadville would put me a couple hundred feet
    above 10K ft, but know one there so have never cooked there.

    > Baking up here is a joy! The yeast rises like crazy. You can't start
    > sourdough though. There is not enough yeast in the air to get it
    > going.


    That explains a lot! I tried sourdough half a dozen times, to no
    avail. I'll get more into baking this Winter.

    > I also have to add extra liquid to most cakes and cookies, and even to pie
    > dough. It is so dry up here.


    That's what I would have thought, but almost all mixes suggest adding
    flour if you live above 3K ft. I've found doing nothing works just as
    well.


    > I am used to the fact that pasta takes 30 minutes to cook and potatoes an
    > hour. Water must boil at about 180 degrees.


    Yep. Boiling is the real killer. Used to take me less than 2 hrs to
    cook a big pot of beans at sea level, now takes almost 4 hrs. My
    pressure cooker is a godsend, though I don't do beans with it.

    I have no problem with a lot of other things. I was reading books
    about elevation cooking when the librarian ask me if I'd yet tried no
    changes at all. Now I don't do much of anything with non-yeast breads
    like sf's carrot cake. Comes out perfect. Likewise baked/roasted
    goods. Did a frozen pizza the other night according to instruction
    and it came out perfect. Tasted like crap, but that's another thread.
    Maybe the baking/roasting differences are more pronounced 2K ft
    higher, but I'm getting the hang of it here at a year round 8K ft.

    Other things are looking up for me. I'm finally properly
    outfitted with real CO Winter apparel, they're now wiring the sewer
    lines for heat so they won't freeze, and the snow keeps mom from
    wandering off. I think I'm going to enjoy this Winter.


    nb

  18. #18
    notbob Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On 2010-08-17, Karen Lewis <[email protected]> wrote:

    I'm jes outside Buena Vista CO, at about 8K ft. Love it! Driving
    about 40 miles North to Leadville would put me a couple hundred feet
    above 10K ft, but know one there so have never cooked there.

    > Baking up here is a joy! The yeast rises like crazy. You can't start
    > sourdough though. There is not enough yeast in the air to get it
    > going.


    That explains a lot! I tried sourdough half a dozen times, to no
    avail. I'll get more into baking this Winter.

    > I also have to add extra liquid to most cakes and cookies, and even to pie
    > dough. It is so dry up here.


    That's what I would have thought, but almost all mixes suggest adding
    flour if you live above 3K ft. I've found doing nothing works just as
    well.


    > I am used to the fact that pasta takes 30 minutes to cook and potatoes an
    > hour. Water must boil at about 180 degrees.


    Yep. Boiling is the real killer. Used to take me less than 2 hrs to
    cook a big pot of beans at sea level, now takes almost 4 hrs. My
    pressure cooker is a godsend, though I don't do beans with it.

    I have no problem with a lot of other things. I was reading books
    about elevation cooking when the librarian ask me if I'd yet tried no
    changes at all. Now I don't do much of anything with non-yeast breads
    like sf's carrot cake. Comes out perfect. Likewise baked/roasted
    goods. Did a frozen pizza the other night according to instruction
    and it came out perfect. Tasted like crap, but that's another thread.
    Maybe the baking/roasting differences are more pronounced 2K ft
    higher, but I'm getting the hang of it here at a year round 8K ft.

    Other things are looking up for me. I'm finally properly
    outfitted with real CO Winter apparel, they're now wiring the sewer
    lines for heat so they won't freeze, and the snow keeps mom from
    wandering off. I think I'm going to enjoy this Winter.


    nb

  19. #19
    Karen Lewis Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    I have not had any trouble with roasting things and the grilling seems to
    work fine too. I do use the crock pot for beans and stews.
    My old recipes for muffins and scones and cupcakes and such seem to turn out
    fine without any changes.
    Still puzzled about why the pizza didn't work. I like homemade better
    anyway.
    Why is it so hard to find real winter clothes? They look warm but really
    are not.
    I love my fireplace!!

    > I have no problem with a lot of other things. I was reading books
    > about elevation cooking when the librarian ask me if I'd yet tried no
    > changes at all. Now I don't do much of anything with non-yeast breads
    > like sf's carrot cake. Comes out perfect. Likewise baked/roasted
    > goods. Did a frozen pizza the other night according to instruction
    > and it came out perfect. Tasted like crap, but that's another thread.
    > Maybe the baking/roasting differences are more pronounced 2K ft
    > higher, but I'm getting the hang of it here at a year round 8K ft.
    >
    > Other things are looking up for me. I'm finally properly
    > outfitted with real CO Winter apparel, they're now wiring the sewer
    > lines for heat so they won't freeze, and the snow keeps mom from
    > wandering off. I think I'm going to enjoy this Winter.
    >
    >
    > nb



  20. #20
    notbob Guest

    Default Re: High altitude cooking

    On 2010-08-19, Karen Lewis <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Still puzzled about why the pizza didn't work. I like homemade better
    > anyway.


    Mine? It did. Di Giorno brand. I came out perfect, bakewise, but
    has degraded into the worst, most tasteless, pizza on the market.
    I've come to the conlusion I'll hafta learn to make my own.
    Store bought pizzas jes don't get it anymore. I've got the crust
    down, but need a good sauce. I'm open to suggestion.

    > Why is it so hard to find real winter clothes? They look warm but really
    > are not.


    After 2 Winters living in rags, I can finally afford good clothing and
    have learned what works, at least for me, and it's fleece! Give me
    Polartec or give me Hawaii! Comes in 3 basic weights, 100-300 and a
    few specialized variants. Polartec invented fleece and it's still the
    best. Accept no substitutes!

    > I love my fireplace!!


    I bet you do. I'm forest green with envy.

    nb



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