Category Archives: Kitchen Queries

Your kitchen conundrums answered here.

To salt or not to salt the water? That is the question.

Q. “Bring a pan of water to the boil, generously salted, add the spaghetti or…” seems to be a default setting for recipes for cooking pasta & most vegetables. Is there a scientific reason for cooking pasta etc in salted … Continue reading

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Toasting sesame seeds

Q. When I’m toasting sesame seeds how do I stop them jumping all over the place? It happens whether I use a frying pan or the grill. A. Are you cooking them over a medium high heat, and shaking them … Continue reading

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Circotherm Ovens

Q. I have always used a gas oven, but now I have an electric one with a bewildering number of oven settings – circotherm, circotherm intensive, bread baking, top/bottom heat, bottom heat, circo-roasting…..- and I’m never sure which to use. … Continue reading

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Frying Aubergines

Q. Can suggest the best way to fry aubergines? As everyone knows, they soak up loads of oil, and if you try using less they don’t fry properly (I find they end up raw in parts the oil has missed … Continue reading

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Q. Have you ever come across a recipe for making a boczek?.

A. Boczek is that delightful Polish variation on cured/smoked belly pork theme. It’s very good sliced and lain on top of a slice of rye bread thickly smeared with mustard, as my old mushroom mentor, Adam the Pole, used to … Continue reading

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Q. We are advised not to re-freeze thawed frozen food. Is it safe to freeze soup made with stock from the freezer?

A. The British Frozen Food Associations (http://www.thenewiceage.com) advises not to on the grounds that ‘that each time foods are prepared germs can enter the foods and each time these foods are frozen at home, the germs are preserved with the … Continue reading

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Q. I am trying to find a recipe for ice cream wafers. Surprisingly I can find none on the internet.

A. As it happens, I was looking for ice cream cones in which to serve some mulberry ice cream at my local Waitrose the other weekend, and next to Askey’s Cones were Askey’s Wafers. There are 48 of them in … Continue reading

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