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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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  • How to Fry Gnocchi?

    After watching your show I tried to fry some gnocchi. However they became soft and started to melt rather than being roasted. Please help!

    From the nigella team:

    Nigella fries store-bought gnocchi in the Rapid Roastini recipe in Kitchen (p68) and gives a description in the book of the type used. The gnocchi are potato gnocchi that are sold in the chilled section of the supermarket - not the frozen or vacuum-packed ambient type. The gnocchi are fairly firm and so hold up well to the frying, becoming crisp on the outside but soft within.

    Whilst we have not experienced gnocchi "melting" in the pan there are some potential reasons. The first is that a softer type of gnocchi was used (possibly home-made or from a deli), or a gnocci containing cheese was used. These would probably need to be boiled (following the package instructions) and cooled before frying so that they are firm. We would also suggest patting the gnocchi dry after boiling and dusting them with a little flour before cooking to reduce the risk of them sticking to the pan. Also we do not advise using frozen gnocchi in this recipe as they can be slightly soggy if they are thawed before cooking and they can cause the fat in the pan to spit if cooked from frozen. It is also possible that the frying pan and oil were not heated before the gnocchi was added meaning that the outside did not form a crust quickly enough and causing the gnocchi to soften rather than roast, or the pan was over-crowded (which would also prevent a crust from forming).

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