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Subject: 120 potatoes
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

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From: dave.mcneish 
Date: Tue, 5 Dec 2000 10:35:13 -0000
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I have to provide 120 nice oven baked potatoes at 6pm on saturday.
My plan is to do 20 potatoes in 6 ovens (thats what friends are for) who
live nearby and ship them up at eating time.

I know 1-4 bakers take around an hour.  Anyone any idea who long 20 potatoes
would take in a conventional oven without skewers???

Timing is everything....

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From: karen mcdermott 
Date: Tue, 05 Dec 2000 08:48:19 -0200
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I make 120 baked potatoes every Friday and Saturday. As you probably guessed I
work in a restuarant. I cook them 60 to a tray for 90 minutes at 400 degrees. I
would think that for 20 potatos 60 to 75 minutes would be plenty of time.

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From: Darkginger 
Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2000 08:01:05 GMT
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karen mcdermott wrote:
> I make 120 baked potatoes every Friday and Saturday. As you probably guessed I
> work in a restuarant. I cook them 60 to a tray for 90 minutes at 400 degrees. I
> would think that for 20 potatos 60 to 75 minutes would be plenty of time.

OK, I'm confused. Does it take longer to bake more potatoes? I understand
that it does in a microwave, but in a conventional oven? I (obviously
wrongly!) thought that it would take the same time no matter how many
potatoes are in the oven! Mind you, I don't recall ever trying to bake more
than 10 at one time!

Someone explain please....

Jo

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From: karen mcdermott 
Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2000 09:16:13 -0200
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Darkginger wrote:
> OK, I'm confused. Does it take longer to bake more potatoes? I understand
> that it does in a microwave, but in a conventional oven? I (obviously
> wrongly!) thought that it would take the same time no matter how many
> potatoes are in the oven! Mind you, I don't recall ever trying to bake more
> than 10 at one time!

because of the volume of potatoes , it will take longer for the ones in 
the center of the pan to bake.
It's the same principle you use when cooking a roast. The larger the 
piece of meat the longer you have to cook it . A 2 lb roast will cook 
quicker then a 10 lb roast.

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From: penmart01[at]aol.como (Sheldon)
Date: 06 Dec 2000 17:04:53 GMT
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karen mcdermott writes:
>Darkginger wrote:
>> OK, I'm confused. Does it take longer to bake more potatoes? I understand
>> that it does in a microwave, but in a conventional oven? I (obviously
>> wrongly!) thought that it would take the same time no matter how many
>> potatoes are in the oven! Mind you, I don't recall ever trying to bake more
>> than 10 at one time!
>
>because of the volume of potatoes , it will take longer for the ones in 
>the center of the pan to bake.

If you know potatoes will not bake properly using a pan then why use a pan? 
Bake potatoes directly on the oven rack, no rearranging will be necessary

>It's the same principle you use when cooking  a roast. The larger the 
>piece of meat the longer you have to cook it . A 2 lb roast will cook 
>quicker then a 10 lb roast.

That principal holds true that larger roasts require more time per pound than
smaller roasts but when two equally sized roasts are cooked together no
significant extra time is required per total weight.  Providing they are of the
same size/configuration, several potatoes baked at the same time do not require
significantly more cooking time than one.

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From: penmart01[at]aol.como (Sheldon)
Date: 06 Dec 2000 12:14:28 GMT
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Darkginger wrote:
>OK, I'm confused. Does it take longer to bake more potatoes? I understand
>that it does in a microwave, but in a conventional oven? I (obviously
>wrongly!) thought that it would take the same time no matter how many
>potatoes are in the oven! Mind you, I don't recall ever trying to bake more
>than 10 at one time!

Baking 6 potatoes vs 20 potatoes with a conventional oven in a practical sense
will not dramatically alter cooking time as it will with a microwave oven but
in actuality the time factor will increase by some small quantity for the
greater number relative to the average temperature differential and the average
combined potato mass and surface area of each additional potato in relation to
the oven volume.  For practical purposes one may possibly need to allow a few
seconds more for each additional potato as the number of potatoes increases,
that is by some exponential factor... I say 'may' because not all ovens exhibit
the same "rate of rise", that is how quickly a particular oven is able to
compensate/recover for/from induced temperature changes due to the addition of
some item of lesser temperatutre and whereas the mere act of opening a
preheated oven door and leaving it open a small while longer to add more
potatoes can have a greater affect than the actual additional number of
potatoes... in the final analysis, if 5-6 additional minutes is that important
one needs to experiment.  But personally I see no reason one couldn't bake the
entire 120 potatoes at one time in a typical 30" residential oven providing the
potatoes were average sized and the same approximate size and shape.

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From: Darkginger 
Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2000 12:25:46 GMT
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Sheldon  wrote:
> Baking 6 potatoes vs 20 potatoes with a conventional oven in a practical sense
> will not dramatically alter cooking time as it will with a microwave oven but
> in actuality the time factor will increase by some small quantity for the
> greater number relative to the average temperature differential and the average
> combined potato mass and surface area of each additional potato in relation to
> the oven volume. 

Thanks for that very thorough and clear explanation. I am no longer
confused! It's not that I'm ever likely to want to cook 120 potatoes at one
time, but the physics of the thing escaped me, which bugged me! Thanks
again...

Jo

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From: miche[at]technologist.com (Miche)
Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2000 10:17:35 +1300
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"dave.mcneish" wrote:
> I know 1-4 bakers take around an hour.  Anyone any idea who long 20 potatoes
> would take in a conventional oven without skewers???

About an hour.  The cooking time doesn't alter for volume the way it does
for a microwave.

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From: Mike Reid 
Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2000 09:54:30 +0000
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Following up to Miche :
>About an hour.  The cooking time doesn't alter for volume the way it does
>for a microwave.
>Miche

glad you said that, I was sitting here trying to work out what the
problem was.

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From: dave.mcneish 
Date: Wed, 6 Dec 2000 10:15:06 -0000
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>About an hour.  The cooking time doesn't alter for volume the way it does
>for a microwave.
>Miche

Great - the confirmation I was looking for.
The sceptics will be silenced by the fluffy beauties produced at 6pm
precisely

and if it doesn't work out you can bet I'll let you know.


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