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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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  • oven temps given in Nigella's books

    I am cooking the turkey following your suggestions for pre-soaking (ref: Nigella's Christmas). Are the oven temps given for fan or conventional oven, and is fan preferable to conventional?

    Hi, I have two of Nigella's books, but I cannot seem to find anywhere whether the oven temperatures are for fan assisted ovens or conventional ovens. Can you help?

    From the nigella team:

    The temperatures stated in Nigella's books (including Christmas) are conventional oven temperatures. The dishes should be cooked on the middle shelf of the oven, unless specified otherwise. Conventional ovens do tend to have hot and cold spots so if you can it is worth rotating pans around in the oven half way through cooking time (especially for long cooking times and if baking more than one sheet of cookies or tin of cupcakes at one time). 

    Fan ovens tend to have more consistent temperatures throughout the oven so shelf positioning is slightly less important and it is easier to cook two or more items at the same time. This is the main advantage of a fan oven. However, as the fan drives hot air through the oven it means that fan ovens tend to cook a lot faster than conventional ovens. To help compensate for this most ovens recommend the oven temperature is reduced by 20c (50F), but ovens do vary so it is best to check the manufacturer's handbook.

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