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High Altitude Baking

Faye asks: I have used the same recipe for Chocolate Zucchini Bread for many years with no problems. The last couple of years when I’ve tried it, it has fallen. I got the recipe from a church cookbook in IN. I now live in the Denver area at about 5400′. I have never taken the seeds out, do not peel, and today, squeezed the zucchini in a very thin dish towel. AllĀ loaves fell before I took them out of the oven.

I made 5 mini loaves, 6 cupcakes (loaves & cupcakes in aluminum) and 1 9×5 loaf pan. I have a new double oven (2 mo old). I baked in upper ovenĀ on the lower of the 2 shelves. I only cooked them 30 min because of the smallness of the pans. Any suggestions? Thanks!

Baking S.O.S. says: It sounds like there are a number of factors that could be contributing to this problem, including a new oven that you are not yet completely familiar with. But the most likely cause is baking at a much higher altitude than the recipe was written for. (most recipes are written for baking at or near sea level)

When baking at high altitudes, you will need to make adjustments to the original recipe in order to achieve the same results. Here are a couple of helpful resources to guide you in making adjustments:
Epicurious: High Altitude Baking Recipes and Tips – this on-line guide explains the science behind baking at higher elevations–what happens to the baked goods and what adjustments need to be made to compensate for those effects.

Betty Crocker: Baking and Cooking at High Altitudes – this site includes a chart of potential causes and specific adjustments to try. Follow the suggestions for Quick Breads as the Chocolate Zucchini Bread falls into that category.

I hope some of those suggestions will help alleviate this problem of high altitude baking. Good luck!

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