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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

  • Shortcrust Pastry By Machine

    Please can you tell me how I can make great shortcrust pastry in my Kenwood Major? My attempts so far have produced an extremely short pastry that is really difficult to work with. I need to produce quite large batches. If the problem cannot be resolved a sure fire suggestion for divine pastry would be great. Thank you!

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  • Fruit Cake - Is It Baked?

    I'm baking my own wedding cake, using the Christmas cake recipe in Nigella's Feast. I used the largest measurements, and after leaving the cake to bake for 4 hours I opened the oven to discover it was still quite raw-looking - I'd put the cake on the lowest shelf in the oven, and it was obviously too low. I moved the cake up, increased the heat, and after another hour and a half the cake seemed to be cooked through. I am concerned, though, that as the cake sat for so many hours at a low temperature, that 1) it will not taste perfect - there might be a 'raw flour' taste, and 2) there might be a food safety issue because there were six raw eggs in the batter. As it's a wedding cake I want it to taste perfect and ideally not poison any of the pregnant or old people who'll be at the reception. What is your advice? Would it be best to throw out this cake and start again?

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  • Kitchen Equipment

    On the Kitchen TV show Nigella serves butter on a small wooden chopping board with a handle. Where can I buy one?   

    Hello, I was wondering where I could find Nigella's silver metal jars used for storing sugar in episodes of Kitchen? Thank you, Sam

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  • Birthday Cake for a 1 year old

    What type of cake is suitable for a 1 year old? Any ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Coffee Cake with Coffee Essence

    Dear Nigella Team, I recently made Nigella's coffee cake but I was out of instant of espresso so I used Camp coffee essence and it curdled. Is this normal? The cake batter curdled and so did the icing. Thanks, Jack

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  • Caster Sugar Substitute

    Hello. The recipe for Almond and Apple cake looks wonderful, but I'm not sure that I can find caster/superfine sugar in my area. What can I substitute? Thanks!

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  • Chocolate Cake Breaking Into Pieces

    I made Nigella's Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake from Feast (p269). When I checked the cake after 35 minutes of baking, there was a crack in the top and when I put the skewer into the centre it and it came out sticky, but in other parts of the cake the skewer came out perfectly clean. It seemed well baked on the whole. I let it cool under a cold fan. But the cake was very delicate, it was beaking up when I was shifting it from wire rack to plate. And after icing, when I cut it with a knife, again it was breaking into pieces. Taste wise it was very nice, soft, melting and moist. Everyone liked it. I didn't bake the cake in two separate tins, just in one tin and then cut it into halves using a thread. I baked it in a microwave convection oven. And I didn't have sour cream so I put the same quantity of single cream (thick straight from the fridge) and added some lemon juice to it. Why was the cake so fragile? Also what is the best substitute for sour cream here in Pakistan? Nazish.

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  • Almond Meal

    Hello Nigella Team!  In my country is hard to find "almond meal" so I wondered if I can make it from whole almonds? Do I just grind them? Thanks!

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