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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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Latest Queries

  • Chocolate Orange Loaf

    Hello Nigella Team! Can I substitute butter for oil in Nigella's Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake? If so, how much? Will it affect the taste or texture? If oil is not possible, what are the other possible substitutes? Many thanks, Brandon

    From the nigella team:

    Nigella's Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake (from Kitchen) uses butter and in this particular recipe we would not suggest using oil as a substitute. The butter, syrup and sugar are beaten together at the beginning of the recipe. This slightly aerates the mixture and also helps the sugar to partailly dissolve. If you mix together oil, syrup and sugar then it will have a very different effect. Also as oil has a higher fat content than butter it will also affect the final texture of the cake.

    If you are avoiding dairy proucts then you could use an appropriate margarine as an alternative. Generally we prefer the flavour of butter to that of margarine, but as the cake is flavoured with chocolate and orange the difference should be less pronounced in this cake.

    Please note that the loaf cake tends to sink in the middle as it cools (and see the photo on p309 of Kitchen). This will happen if you use butter or margarine.



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