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Kitchen Queries

Welcome to Kitchen Queries, where the nigella.com team will answer your cooking or food related questions.  We’d love you to submit some of your recipe problems, dilemmas or queries for us to get our teeth into!

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Please note, we are only able to answer questions selected for publication and aren't able to enter into personal correspondence.

Latest Queries

  • Baked Custard

    I regularly make a baked custard, they all turn out well but I have a problem as the leftover custard tends to weep (I seem to get a lot of water in the dish with the leftover custard). I bake the custard in a Pyrex dish in the oven for the correct time. I use 3 eggs and 1 pint of milk, a couple of tablspoons sugar, a little salt and I sprinkle nutmeg on the top. Have you any suggestions that may help me? Thanks, Tommy.

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  • Cakes Uncooked In The Middle

    I have tried if most of the cake recipies from your site and always always hve the same problem - the cakes cook from the sides but stay uncooked in the middle. If I try to cook it further for a few minutes then the result is it that the sides over cook and harden and the cake becomes hard.  What am I doing wrong? Please help! Much Love, Arpita.

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  • Cake Layers Too Thin

    Hi Nigella Team, I've baked the Devil's Food Cake (Kitchen, p254) on two occassions now, using 20cm sandwich tins and following the recipe meticulously. The layers are very thin, only about 2cm each - what could be the reason for this? I have a Thermofan oven, so this also can't be the cause. Thanks!

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  • Baking With A Slightly Larger Pan Size

    Hi, I have a question about baking. I love your baking recipes, and have followed many to make cakes, pies, cookies, scones, etc.  However I only own two 9-inch round pans with which to cook. Occasionally, you will call for an 8-inch pan which would allow the finished product to have a bit more height. I've not run into any problems using 9-inch pans, but, the cakes do sometimes look flatter and a bit less glorious than the finished photo in your many cookbooks. I realize that not all cakes would function in the way I am about to ask this question, and while I could easily purchase 8 inch rounds, I've been lazy, and not done so yet. If I wanted to add some height to the finished product, is there a general rule of thumb for upping the ingredients to create the desired effect. Again, since baking does call for a modicum of precision, would altering deter the final process? I was curious if you had any advice so that I don't have a flat cake. No one is complaining, and since I'm only cooking for my partner, family, and friends, I've yet to have someone say, that two tier cake looks a little short. Any suggestions? Or should I succumb to the purchase of two 8-inch rounds.

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  • Chocolate Birthday Cake

    Hi Kitchen Queries team, I am a huge fan of Nigella's Dense Chocolate Loaf cake (from How to be a Domestic Goddess) and would really like to make a variation for my daughter's birthday cake. I was wondering if the cupcake variation (p168) could be used? If so with what size cake tin? Can two pieces be sandwiched together? I appreciate that the Buttermilk Cake is probably a more practical option, however, my daughter would really like a chocolate one! I would really appreciate the help! Many thanks, Daniella Gardner

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  • Pancake Fillings

    Hi Nigella and team, my family love pancakes but I was wondering if you can suggest any interesting ways of serving them on Shrove Tuesday, rather than just the usual lemon and sugar?

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  • Stand Mixer Motor Power

    Hello,  I was wondering if I can make a good semolina bread with a 1000 watt mixer or do I need to buy a 1400 watt mixer? What is the added value of a high wattage?

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  • Storing Jam and Marmalade

    My mother always put a quarter of a tablet on the top of the waxed paper on marmalade and jam before storing it. I would like to know what the tablet was and did this prevent or reduce the amount of mould etc. She kept some jams for years! Is there a modern equivalent?

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