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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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  • Chocolate Meringue Truffle Cake

    Hi, I have made Nigella's Chocolate Meringue Truffle Cake twice. Each time I poured the truffle mixture in, the meringue absorbed all the liquid, became soggy and pretty much disappeared. Is the meringue supposed to do this? Or have I done something wrong? Also the second time I made it the meringue also cracked in the oven - it developed big gashes in it and I could see the base of the pan! Everyone still loved the cake on the both occasions!

    From the nigella team:

    For Nigella's Chocolate Meringue Truffle Cake (from Feast) the meringue base will become a little softer and more marshmallowy once the truffle filling has been poured over, but it should not disappear completely.

    It sounds as if the meringue base isn't quite baked fully. As all ovens vary it may be worth baking the base for an extra 5 minutes, to make sure that it is a little more dried out. If you have time you could also switch off the oven, leave the door slightly ajar and let the base cool in the oven for a couple of hours. Make sure also that the meringue base is properly cold before you add the truffle mixture, if it is warm it is more likely to absorb some of the mixture.

    If the meringue base is cracking then slower cooling of the base in the turned-off oven, as described above, should help to reduce this. Also make sure that the egg whites are whisked to proper soft peaks before the sugar is added and be sure to use caster (superfine) sugar. 

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