Day 34 – High altitude-doodles

3 02 2010

High altitude challenges both bakers and runners. Zach and I made our snickerdoodles today, which were delicious — chewy and crispy in spite of losing some “puff” in the last minutes of cooking.

After living a mile high in Denver for 10 years, I still don’t remember to adjust recipes for our lack of air pressure. You need less baking soda and powder here, and you have to decrease the sugar and add liquid because flour is drier above 5,000 feet. Also need to increase the oven temp and shorten the baking time. Whew – kind of a science experiment when you try a new recipe!

Zach, who is 5 and loves cooking, science and all carbohydrates, told me while beating the eggs that he might be a chef someday…at IHOP! Or a co-pilot. (Not so ready for all the responsibility given to the real pilot I guess!) With either career, maybe he can perfect a high-altitude recipe for pancakes.

For runners, as this website explains, the altitude requires other adjustments that your body – luckily – makes on its own after an adjustment period. Less available oxygen in the air forces your red blood cell count to increase to supply your muscles with more oxygen.

I do notice when we go to the beach, I feel like I can run forever and faster. Like my husband’s Bolder Boulder training t-shirt says: “Sea Level is for Sissies!” Ah – maybe we’re tougher runners, but low-landers are certainly better bakers!

Today was a day off from running for me, so I did the FIRM DVD “hard core fusion” … to justify eating a few more flat but tasty snickerdoodles!