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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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  • Measuring Liquid Ingredients

    Hi, I am a big follower of Nigella and her recipes and I love to cook and bake very much. I do follow and try all of her recipes. While baking I used measuring cups to measure wet ingredients like milk, cream. And therefore the end result turned out completely different. I was trying to make chocolate chip cookies and biscuits. The biscuits turned out like small buns as the batter became very runny or liquid or like cream. So is it essential to use measuring jug/jar to measure wet ingredients (particularly when the recipe says 2 cups or 20 ml or 100 ml etc.) like milk or cream or any liquor? Or can we measure by using cups and spoons though they have "ml" mentioned on them?

    From the nigella team:

    We are not sure if you are using metric measurements (grams and mls) or US measurements (cups) but the first thing we would mention is that you should not mix the units of measurement. So follow a recipe either in metric weight/volume or in US cups. If you are using the metric system then use a measuring jug with millilitres and litres marked on it.

    If you are using the US measures of cups then generally you should use different utensils to measure dry and wet ingredients. Dry ingredients are measured using cup sets (1/4, 1/3, 1/2 and 1 cup) as the ingredients can be put into the cup and levelled off easily. For liquid measures you should use a measuring jug (sometimes called a liquid measuring cup) that has cup measures marked on the side as the liquid can spill out of a dry measuring cup too easily. Using tablespoons (15ml/1/2 ounce) to measure large quantities of liquid is not advisable as it is time consuming and can be inaccurate if there is too much spillage.

    When using either a metric or American measuring jug put the jug on a level surface and lean down so that the meniscus (surface of the liquid) is at eye level. This should give you an accurate reading for liquid measures. 

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