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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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  • Apples and Pears

    I have a bag of eating apples and a bag of pears that aren't going to last much longer and I'm looking for a nice loaf-style cake recipe to make from them. Any ideas?

    From the nigella team:

    One thing to note when cooking with apples and pears is that they often cook at different rates (pears tend to cook more quickly when ripe) so sometimes it is difficult to use both together. If you wanted to make an apple and pear pie then it would be a good idea to cook them both gently first with a little sugar then let them cool and drain off off any juice before using them in a pie filling. The juice can be handed round seperately when you serve the pie but syphoning it off first will reduce the risk of a soggy pie base.

    Nigella's Damp Apple and Almond Cake from Feast (p184) cooks apples first to make a puree and here you could use a combination of apples and pears instead. The apples could also be used in Nigella's Apple and Walnut Cake from Domestic Goddess (p36). This is a round cake but with a closer texture than a sponge cake.

    Nigella Express has a particularly good recipes for pears - the Pear and Ginger Muffins (p97) which are both easy to make and delicious to eat. You could also peel, halve and core the pears and cook them briefly before using them in the Chocolate Pear Pudding (p373). You will need about 600g of peeled and cored pears.

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