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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

  • Size of Diced Sweet Potatoes

    Hello Nigella. Recently I prepared your magnificent Ginger Chilli Bass Fillets & Sweet Potato and Red Lentil Dhal, a perfect recipe for guests in Cape Town, South Africa. When dicing the sweet potatoes, I wasn't sure how large the pieces should be for an effective dhal. In typical fashion I had left them "too big" (around 3-4 cubed centimeters each), leading me to scoop them out and rechop them on the board, trying not to burn my fingers. Fortunately the wine helped numb any pain I would've felt! Is there a standard chopping size? Personally I prefer the dhal quite chunky to complement the fish, but I'm sure if it's smooth it would taste just as good. Is there a preferred chopping "size" given the cooking time of the potato and the lentils?

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  • Garlic Flavoured Olive Oil

    Hi! I have several of Nigella's books and she has many recipes that use garlic flavoured olive oil. How I can make my own flavoured olive oil with garlic or with other flavours? Thank you.

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  • Cookie Dough In Advance

    Hi there! Can you please let me know if the Cookie Dough in Nigella Kitchen can be made a day in advance and stored in the fridge overnight before baking. Thanks.

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  • What Are "Cups"

    Hello Nigella, I am a French Domestic Goddess and I love everything you do. My only question is what do you mean by a cup ? Is it a large one, a small one, a medium one? I am not used to them because in France we talk about "kilos" or "grammes". Please help! Marie-Agnes, Paris

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  • Sandwich Tins (Layer Pans) vs. Deep Cake Tins

    Hello, I am curious as to why some of Nigella's cake recipes say you should use sandwich tins (layer pans)? I am unfamiliar with a cake being baked in two tins, as opposed to just baking it in one tin and cutting into layers after it's baked. Is there a difference in taste or texture or is it only to do with convenience? Will the cake be as nice if baked in one tin?

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  • Black Coloured Sponge

    Hi, I was wondering how I would make a black sponge cake? I have black gel colouring, but I was wondering if I have to mix this with chocolate powder first as I would rather make a black coloured vanilla sponge. Thanks!

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  • Recipe Search - Potato Salad/Chocohotopots

    Hi there! I once saw Nigella on BBC Food making a warm potato salad with bacon, peas, wine (I think) and new potatoes - more like a side dish than a salad really. Could you tell me which recipe this was? Thanks very much, Sandy.  

    Hi Nigella, I recently saw a video of you making a chocolate dessert.  It is a favourite of your children, one of whom named this dessert hotchopot (if I remember correctly). Please help me find the recipe as I wish to replicate this luscious chocolate delight. Many thanks, Grace.

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  • Marmalade Pudding Cake

    I made the Marmalade Pudding Cake from Kitchen, but with some modifications. I used blackberry marmalade instead of orange and used 1 teaspoon honey in addition to the brown sugar. I set my oven (without fan) at 180 C and baked for 25 minutes and checked with a toothpick which came out clean from couple of locations. Therefore I turned the oven off and removed the pan from the oven. However the cake had not set properly in the centre, though it was alright around the edges. Does it mean that I removed it a little too early?

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