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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

  • Baking Time For Black Cake

    Hello, can you please help me with the timing of baking Nigella's Black Cake? I notice Nigella's recipe suggests 1 hour at 180c and then 2 1/2 to 3 hours at 170c. The recipe is similar to Laurie Colwin's recipe, which just suggests 1 to 1 1/4 hours at 180c. There is such a big difference in terms of time for two very similar recipes, I just wanted some advice on this. Many thanks for your help, Ziska

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  • Christmas Tree Biscuits

    Hi, I have seen the recipe on this website for the Edible Christmas Tree Decorations but wondered how long they last for before spoiling? I would like to make "Advent" biscuits as a countdown to Christmas and so they need to last over 24 days without going soft or bad - some of that time hung on a tree. Which recipes, if any, are suitable? Thanks for your help. Marlene

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  • Brining A Frozen Turkey

    I'm going to try the Spiced And Superjuicy Roast Turkey recipe this year but in a effort to keep costs down, would it be ok to use a thawed frozen turkey instead of a free range one?

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  • Italian Christmas Pudding Cake Without Tuaca

    Hello! I know it's still quite a bit early until the Christmas season is upon us, but is there any way to make this cake kid-friendly by either omitting the liqueurs or substituting something else? I so want to make this for Christmas and there will be plenty of children at our celebration. Thank you! Allan  

    Hi, I live in Switzerland and I can't find the Tuaca liqueur. Do you know of any outlets that may sell it? Thanks, Flurina

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  • Christmas Pudding Mistakes

    Hello, I was so excited to be making Nigella's Ultimate Christmas Pudding that I used double the amount of ingredients so I could make two initially. But now reading back on all the ingredients when I started making more I realised I added double of everything apart from the vegetable shortening - where I accidentally only added enough for one pudding. Puddings have been steamed and look fine however as they are for gifts I'm hoping you can please tell me if they are ruined or not? Many thanks, Vikkie  

    I have just made Nigella's Christmas Pudding and realised I have used bicarbonate of soda instead of baking powder. Is there anything I can do to rectify this, or is it ruined? Smiffy66

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  • Christmas Pudding Boiled In Calico

    My late wife used to make a Christmas pudding that was mixed, in October, in the traditional way, after steeping the fruit, etc., the mixture was placed on a sheet of calico and tied to form a ball and boiled. It was allowed to hang until Christmas. Then, on Christmas morning it was boiled again. My family is now widespread but this coming Christmas they will all be together here in Brisbane and this is something I would like to do, not knowing when they'll all be together again. Can you please help me? Gary Mead.  

    Is it possible to do Nigella's Ultimate Christmas Puddings in calico? I would like to give my work team a mini pudding for Xmas and thought traditional calico pudding would be nice presentation. Please advise. Thank you, WHalami

    Is it possible to cook the pudding in a cloth rather than a plastic pudding bowl? Barbara Thompson.

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  • Storing Christmas Pudding Without Bowl

    I have one pudding bowl but I want to make a few puddings. What's the best way to store the pudding without the bowl?

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  • Suet In Ultimate Christmas Pudding

    Yesterday I made the Ultimate Christmas Pudding for the first time. I left it to cool overnight in it's tin foil. When I unwrapped it this morning, the flecks of suet were very visible. As we often eat "Pudding " cold on Boxing Day I am really disappointed. it looks most unappetizing. Is this normal ? What have I done wrong? Please Help!

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