How to be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Food by Nigella Lawson

Search this book for Recipes »
  • My mother-in-law's Madeira cake
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea; British
    • Ingredients: lemons; butter; caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour; plain flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: lemons; butter; caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour; plain flour; caraway seeds
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: poppyseeds; lemons; butter; caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour; plain flour
  • Easy almond cake
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert
    • Ingredients: eggs; marzipan; almond extract; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: rosemary; golden caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour; plain flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea; French
    • Ingredients: plain flour; caster sugar; butter; egg yolks
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert
    • Ingredients: almond extract; lemons; eggs; ground almonds; butter; caster sugar
  • Lemon-syrup loaf cake
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: lemons; butter; caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea; Dessert; British
    • Ingredients: eggs; seedless raspberry jam; raspberries; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour; double cream
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea; Dessert
    • Ingredients: lemon curd; mascarpone cheese; lemon oil; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour; eggs
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: orange oil; rhubarb; oranges; whipping cream; eggs; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: passionfruit; lemons; oranges; double cream; eggs; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: instant espresso powder; butter; icing sugar; eggs; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: eggs; prunes; Armagnac; milk; double cream; egg yolks; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: store-cupboard ingredients; eggs; elderflower cordial; double cream; gooseberries; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: lime curd; cream cheese; limes; courgettes; pistachio nuts; eggs; vegetable oil; caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert
    • Ingredients: double cream; eggs; cream cheese; caster sugar; butter; light muscovado sugar; golden caster sugar; self-raising flour
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert; American
    • Ingredients: vanilla beans; dark chocolate; double cream; butter; caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour; egg yolks
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: eggs; instant royal icing; unsweetened shredded coconut; coconut rum; butter; caster sugar; self-raising flour
  • Autumnal birthday cake
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea; Dessert; Fall / autumn
    • Ingredients: pecans; maple syrup; maple extract; butter; golden caster sugar; eggs; self-raising flour; egg whites
    • Categories: Cakes, small; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: lemons; yogurt; butter; eggs; plain flour; caster sugar
  • Cherry-almond loaf cake
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea
    • Ingredients: almond extract; ground almonds; glacéed cherries; self-raising flour; butter; caster sugar; eggs
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Dessert
    • Ingredients: rhubarb; yogurt; cornmeal; ground cinnamon; caster sugar; plain flour; eggs; butter
    • Accompaniments: Muscat-mascarpone cream
    • Categories: Sauces for desserts
    • Ingredients: confectioner's sugar; eggs; muscat wine; mascarpone cheese
    • Accompaniments: Rhubarb cornmeal cake
  • Banana bread
    • Categories: Cakes, large; Afternoon tea; American
    • Ingredients: walnuts; bananas; sultanas; bourbon; plain flour; butter; sugar; eggs

Notes about this book

  • Jane on March 14, 2009

    Love so many recipes in this book.

Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Black cake

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      Very rich - great Christmas cake. Do need to plan ahead though.

    • NicholasS on July 12, 2014

      Some copies of this edition have a misprint in the recipe relating to the use of fruit mixture. All the fruit mixture should be used rather than half. This noted on Nigella Lawson's website:

    • NicholasS on July 12, 2014

      Nigella Lawson's website clarifies the amount of Madeira should be 375ml (1 1/2 cups) and the Rum 350ml (scant 1 1/2 cups).

  • Rhubarb cornmeal cake

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      My 16-year old son's favorite cake (and he's not into sweet things). I like it as much for the muscat-mascarpone cream which is very addictive.

    • Victoria_from_London on June 23, 2018

      500g rhubarb

    • annettle on January 13, 2021

      The rhubarb and cornmeal flavours are both very prominent so you will need to like those to enjoy this, and I suspect it will not be to everyone's tastes - but if you do enjoy them, as I do, it's a lovely sweet-tart cake. Extremely moist, which is a good thing in my book!

  • Pistachio macaroons

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      Very delicious. Great dinner party ending.

  • Ricciarelli

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      If you love almonds you have to try these.

    • bdarmanin on March 23, 2013

      These are AMAZING! Definitely ones to try... Perfect with a cup of coffee!

  • Store-cupboard chocolate-orange cake

    • Jane on April 03, 2017

      This is a nice cake and as the title suggests, is one most cooks could do with ingredients they always have to hand. I used blood orange marmalade and it gave a good tang to the cake. I preferred it warm from the oven as a pudding cake than cold the next day.

    • lilham on September 13, 2015

      This is a lovely and rich chocolate orange cake. Mr lilham thinks it is too rich and prefers to eat it with yoghurt to cut the richness. Everyone else loves it as it is.

    • KIGirl on November 22, 2014

      I am not a big chocolate cake fan... But my work colleagues voted this 9/10

    • anya_sf on January 15, 2024

      I attempted 1/2 recipe in a 6" pan to use up orange marmalade. My self-rising flour was past the date and I thought it had lost its leavening power, so I added some baking powder, but think that was a mistake, as the cake sank severely in the middle. Also, the center's surface appeared shiny and underdone, so I ended up overbaking the cake (the full 50 min was too long) and it was dry. The flavor was good, though, so I'd try this again.

  • Torta alla gianduia (Nutella cake)

    • Jane on August 28, 2012

      I can only report on the cooking of this cake, not the eating, as I made it for a bake sale. The raw batter was delicious so I'm sure the cake is too. I had a problem with the ganache topping as it didn't thicken but I think I should maybe have used an electric whisk rather than a hand whisk. As a result it was quite runny when I poured it on the cake. On the positive side, it sold as soon as I walked it into the bake sale. I'm definitely making it again for a special dinner as I want to eat it next time.

    • Jane on April 23, 2017

      This is a great cake for a special occasion, especially for a Nutella lover. It's fairly simple looking, just a chocolate cake with a ganache topping dotted with browned hazelnuts. But it tastes wonderful and has a great texture - very moist. I use Frangelico for the cake and ganache.

    • rstuart on February 07, 2014

      I make this cake every year for my birthday.. no matter what else I consider, it's still my favourite. really wonderful! I leave the hazelnuts off the top. The ganache can take a while to thicken, but I just stick the pan in the fridge for a while..

    • jacbai on May 07, 2013

      Amazing cake! I've made it several times now and it is always popular amongst friends, family & work colleagues. It does require a bit of time to make, but is worth the effort. Try to ignore how much Nutella goes into the recipe - its quite shocking! I agree with Jane that the ganache is quite runny. I just stored the cake in the fridge to keep the ganache firm until serving.

    • digifish_books on May 02, 2015

      I find the quickest and easiest way to remove the hazelnut skins is to boil them in bicarb and water for a few minutes (see

    • KIGirl on November 22, 2014

      Based on the notes below - I made this for my birthday this year. I didn't have any problems with the ganache setting. What I did notice was the change in texture and taste on refrigeration. Unremarkable Cake with little flavour (in the cake itself despite the amount of Nutella!) before refrigeration - dense mousse-like desert on refrigeration and it appeared to improve with age!

    • Melyinoz on August 25, 2020

      I’ve had this cake flagged to make for years and have finally gotten around to it during COVID lockdown. I'm not as much of a fan as others here. I agree with another contributor's comments that the cake tastes unremarkable. While the texture has improved with refrigeration, sadly, the cake has not. Without the ganache I would consider it a lost cause. I have had much success with other Nigella recipes, so I will put this down as being not to my taste and flip the page.

    • LouiseQuasiChef on August 28, 2018

      This is an AMAZING cake! Beautiful flavor for minimal effort. I toast the hazelnuts, and then whack with a marble rolling pin to split. The full halves I pull out to put on the top of the cake; the crumbs/smaller pieces get ground in the food processor for the interior of the cake. A winner!

  • Molten chocolate babycakes

    • Jane on March 27, 2016

      Very quick and easy to make. I make them in silicone molds and they slip right out so no need for the parchment lining that Nigella suggests. At 10 minutes the center is very gooey, as a molten chocolate cake should be.

    • Hellyloves2cook on November 16, 2012

      I have made these many many times. They are easy to make and delicious, albeit incredibly rich. I like that they can be made in advance which has been useful on occasions.

  • Easter nests

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      Despite my daughter being 14, we still had to make these for Easter. Very easy to make and look so cute.

  • Iced rum sauce

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      This has become my accompaniment of choice for Christmas pudding. The combination of boozy cold with fruity hot is fabulous.

    • Eurydice on May 20, 2011

      Even family members who usually refuse Christmas pudding loved it with this. Will make it every Christmas now.

  • Frangipane mince pies

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      I can't imagine Christmas without these mince pies. I now have to make them for friends as well. The frangipane topping makes them so much more delicious than a pastry lid.

    • lilham on December 22, 2013

      I just made a batch of this, and I can't imagine Christmas without them anymore. My husband tolerates mince pies, but raves about this. In his words, the frangipane topping makes these more like little cakes, and less dominated by the sweetness of mincemeat compared to standard mince pies.

    • Lillibet on December 02, 2011

      I agree with Jane below - I don't like mincemeat, but my partner LOVES these and has been nagging me since the beginning of November to make them - He has had to wait until December but tonight is the night.....

    • anya_sf on December 17, 2020

      I don't love mincemeat, but these were delicious. I got 34 pies using mini muffin tins. Each fit about 1 tsp mincemeat and 2 tsp frangipane. Since I had a 411 g jar of mincemeat, the limiting factor was the frangipane. They needed an extra 5-7 minutes to bake - tops were browned earlier, but bottoms took longer to brown (which I didn't realize at first - had to take one out to check).

  • Christmas-morning muffins

    • Jane on April 22, 2009

      Families all need Christmas traditions - mine all seem to be about food. And these muffins are definitely one I'm keeping - I've made these for the last seven Christmas breakfasts and don't see any reason to stop.

  • Steamed syrup sponge

    • Fiona on September 01, 2011

      Having invested in a steam pudding bowl with clip lid, my first attempt was this recipe - incredibly easy, and took just a few minutes to make. I halved the amount of lemon as the rest of the family aren't keen on lemon puddings - but still too much for them. I would have liked the syrup to permeate through the pudding a bit more than it did, but that's because I have a very sweet tooth - it probably was a good balance of soft sponge pudding with about an inch around the outside soaked in syrup. Will make again.

    • KarinaFrancis on June 27, 2013

      Loved this and it brought a sentimental tear to a British ex-pat's eye. Substituted some leftover pear and ginger syrup for the golden syrup and it worked a treat.

  • Night-and-day cupcakes

    • rodillagra on January 07, 2015

      Might have been delicious. I made them for the school cake sale but by the time I got to the table they had already been sold.

  • Cheese, onion and potato pies

    • rodillagra on January 07, 2015

      Even lovely when served cold.

    • Ro_ on November 27, 2022

      I am not good at pastry, so had some issues when rolling out! Due to that and the fact I used individual flan tins, I ended up with 5-6 pies instead of 8, and as a result I found the pastry-to-filling ratio a bit off: it was too dry, which would maybe have been also helped with a bit more cream in the filling. The flavour was good but not exceptional for me.

  • Fresh gingerbread with lemon icing

    • Eurydice on May 17, 2010

      Possibly the best gingerbread recipe? When I made it I had no golden syrup so left it out, but I don't think it mattered. The lemon icing is great with it too..

    • RNocked1 on September 19, 2020

      The best gingerbread recipe hands down. Easy to make. The icing is unnecessary.

  • Banana bread

    • Eurydice on May 17, 2010

      My favourite banana bread so far. Maybe it's the rum and sultanas :)

    • sharifah on December 10, 2012

      This was a nice and very moist cake. I used Morgan's spiced rum because that was all I had but you can't taste the rum, it just makes the sultanas moist and plump. I was alarmed at the amount of mixture as it filled a 2lb loaf tin right to the top and I was convinced it would spill over during baking, but it didn't.

    • PiaOC on May 18, 2013

      Even without the sultanas, this is a great bread.

    • digifish_books on May 02, 2015

      Have made this often, and we just love it. I use dark rum rather than bourbon.

    • Foodycat on October 01, 2015

      1/10/15 This is such a great recipe, infinitely adaptable. I've done it with apricots in sherry instead of the sultanas. Today I've made 1 loaf with sultanas in Malibu, slivered almonds instead of walnuts, and wholemeal SR flour and 1 loaf with sultanas in Southern Comfort, slivered almonds, 2 mashed bananas and a chopped peach, and the wholemeal flour. All good. 22/8/23 The last couple of times I have made it I have used larger bananas, halved the sugar and added fresh blueberries instead of boozy sultanas and it's still been really moist and plenty sweet enough. The bread is dense enough that the blueberries don't sink to the bottom.

    • delaneymes on January 18, 2019

      The best. I always add chunks of dark choc and often just use whatever booze I have for the sultanas/raisins. My favourite banana bread!

    • kitchen_chick on April 18, 2020

      I made the chocolate variant mentioned at the top of the webpage version of the recipe: replacing 25g of flour with 25g of cocoa powder and adding 100g chocolate chips. I used 85% dark Michel Cluizel chocolate. The think the cocoa and the very dark chocolate I used muted the banana flavor. I also used pecans instead of walnuts. Finally, because we preferred reduced sugar, I reduced the sugar to 100g. This created a much less sweet bread with little burst of sweetness when you get a raisin. (The raisins are a brilliant addition, IMO.) If you want a sweet banana bread, then I wouldn't recommend cutting the sugar that much. The end result was a nice not quite savory but not very sweet chocolatey bread with an underlying banana flavor.

    • anya_sf on May 28, 2020

      I made a cross between the recipe in the US edition and the one on I used the larger amounts of flour (white whole wheat) and sultanas, the smaller amounts of sugar and rum (which didn't really matter since the excess is drained), and 3 large bananas. For a taller loaf, I baked it in an 8"x 4" pan. The bread turned out moist, flavorful, and plenty sweet even with just 100 g sugar. This bread was so easy to mix, I'd definitely make it again, although my family's favorite is still the one from Flour.

    • Tawilliams07 on June 06, 2019

      I can’t count how many times I have made this over the years. First note along side the recipe in the book says 11-Oct-2005: really moist! Make again, followed by a few years of tweaking notes. It’s a great way of using up browning bananas. I usually put the bananas in the freezer until I have enough. When I defrost in a bowl overnight - I just add the liquid that appears to the mashed bananas. The recipe has been tweaked a walnuts [I don’t usually have in the house] or sultanas [not really keen]. Instead — 3T of dark rum and 2 ‘handfuls’ of chocolate chips. I have a bottle of dark rum in the kitchen (not the booze cabinet) just for making this.

  • White-chocolate and macadamia brownies

    • Cati on November 11, 2012

      I cut back sugar by 50 grams, but next time will try cutting back by 100 grams as they were still too sweet for me and family.Quick and easy.

    • cassiemcgannon on August 12, 2012

      These were too sweet for my taste, and I have a pretty sweet tooth!

    • anya_sf on January 28, 2021

      I'd call these blondies rather than brownies. Tried this recipe in hopes that I could use some seized white chocolate, which I liquified again by stirring in some fat. I had 180 g of chocolate, so made 3/4 recipe in a 9"x9" pan. Checked after 30 minutes and the brownies were a bit overdone, so I'll check sooner next time. Substituted toasted pecans (fewer of them) for macadamias. Of course these were quite sweet, but I thought they were delicious and also super chewy, despite overbaking. So glad I was able to use that seized white chocolate!

  • Bagels

    • aliradloff on May 03, 2019

      This is a really simple, almost foolproof recipe for bagels. No long rises, no difficult to find ingredients and a great result. I often add cinnamon and raisins to make a sweet version. The dough is very dry, and you’ll feel like your mixer is going to break when it’s kneading it, but it all works out. One change I make is to form balls and poke out a hole rather than make into ropes and then bagel shapes. It’s a little neater. Cut any leftover bagels in half and freeze, you can then toast them straight from the freezer.

  • Butter cut-out biscuits

    • Astrid5555 on December 13, 2014

      I think we finally found our favorite cutout cookies for Christmas. This recipe produces the perfect dough for baking with children AND they taste amazing (more than a week later they are still excellent!).

  • Star-topped mince pies

    • eliza on December 04, 2023

      I’ve made the pastry for these many times, and it works great. I love the hint of orange in it; I have filled with different mincemeats (David Lebovitz, Pam Corbin etc), but I always use this pastry recipe. Freezes and reheats perfectly, even in the microwave.

    • lilham on December 30, 2016

      Lovely and light pastry. My 5 year old declared this is the best mince pie. (I prefer the frangipane mince pie on the next page myself. I used a normal tart pie instead of a mini one and baked at 200C for 15 min.

    • saladdays on December 20, 2011

      These are my default mince pies as I make them every year. The pastry is very delicate and they make a nice mini mouthful. Many mince pies are too heavy and filling but these are very light to eat.

  • Banana, cherry and white-chocolate cupcakes

    • lilham on February 29, 2016

      I would never expect a one pot cake mix can taste this good. I made them in my mini muffin trays and everyone kept coming back for seconds, and thirds, and fourths!

  • Banana muffins

    • lilham on January 19, 2015

      This has to be the worst muffins I have ever had. Mr lilham made them and told me the batter looked strange. He also commented on the lack of eggs. My preschooler refused to eat them and she loves all cakes normally. If I could give 0 star I would.

    • sharifah on November 10, 2013

      As I was mixing it, I thought there was too little flour and too much of baking powder + bicarb soda, and strangely no eggs? And I thought there's no way this mix would make 12 muffins as the book states. Yep, I managed to only get 6 muffins, and they were very light but I've made better banana muffins, won't be using this recipe again.

    • embk27 on May 07, 2016

      I've tried this recipe twice just to check it wasn't something I'd done wrong but both times the mix looked odd and the muffins came out incredibly dense and chewy in an unpleasant way. Wouldn't make again.

  • Sour-cream chocolate cake with sour-cream icing

    • lilham on May 14, 2016

      A soft and moist chocolate cake. My kids and I loved this. Mr lilham find it too sweet. I added less sugar then specified (180g for the batter, but full amount for the icing). I needed only 2/3 of the icing on the cake.

    • Elnara on December 09, 2013

      Cake was easy to make and turned out okay. It was a great success with the kids and those who like things extra sweet. A bit too sweet for my taste, but acceptable. Not sure if I'll make again. Perhaps for a kids party.

    • Melyinoz on November 20, 2020

      I have made this for my niece's birthday as a second cake. Had to be gluten free, as I only have GF flours, and egg free for my niece. Used 140g brown rice flour and 60g of tapioca flour, plus two flax eggs. Inadvertently used the sugar I use as a pie weight. Like another reviewer, I only needed two thirds of the icing. Fingers crossed that it tastes ok. Update: my niece loved it! As did others.

    • Sparkles75 on April 19, 2019

      My kids love this chocolate cake

  • Chocolate-chestnut cake

    • lilham on October 13, 2013

      Very nice way to use up a can of chestnut purée. Dense and moist. We prefer serving it with cream or icecream instead of the icing sugar as suggested.

  • Boston cream pie

    • lilham on July 09, 2016

      Really lovely. Soft sponge, with creme patisserie in between two layers and a chocolate icing on top.

  • My mother-in-law's Madeira cake

    • lilham on August 07, 2015

      It's a lovely cake but I would prefer not to have a dusting of caster sugar on top. Should have gone with gut instinct and omit that step.

    • Foodycat on May 26, 2018

      I used demerera sugar for the final dusting, which seemed to almost disappear. But a lovely cake, a bit denser than a sponge, beautifully buttery, not too sweet and slightly lemony. The quantity of 240g butter is annoying when a pat is 250 though.

    • Tiganna on March 31, 2019

      This cake is not for me - I prefer the ratios of standard pound cake, ie equal amounts of eggs, flour, sugar, butter. This is heavier on the flour and, to me, makes for a 'floury' tasting cake. It is not bad but won't repeat.

  • Processor puff-pastry

    • lilham on November 21, 2020

      I have never made puff pastry before. The recipe said to turn the butter and flour mixture into a bowl before adding water and lemon juice. I had a hard time getting the mixture to form a dough and added a lot more water as a result. Next time I will add the water and lemon juice in the food processor and blitz slightly so the dough forms a bit before turning out, (This is my usual method). The resulting puff pastry is very good and I’m very pleased with it.

    • cassiemcgannon on March 02, 2013

      This is pretty straightforward for a pastry recipe, and works well. It tastes very, very buttery, so if you want a more neutral flavour maybe look elsewhere.

  • Lily's scones

    • saladdays on December 20, 2011

      These are simple and easy to make and can be from bowl to oven and plate within 30 minutes. I must admit to adding a couple of spoonfuls of sugar to the recipe!

    • Foodycat on July 09, 2014

      Best scones I have ever made.The amount of cream of tartare looks like a mistake, but it is right, and these don't have the strong metallic taste you can get with too much baking powder. Even more successful if you substitute buttermilk for the milk in the recipe.

    • Sparkles75 on April 19, 2019

      Not necessarily the prettiest looking scone but they are always a hit regardless

  • Hettie Potter's suet-free mincemeat

    • Lillibet on December 02, 2011

      I am not a mincemeat eater but have highest recommendations for this from those who are. V fruity and makes mincemeat accessible to those who are on a reduced fat diet (consider filo pastry parcels to wrap it in as well). I usually change the dried fruit using dried cherries, cranberries, blueberries and strawberries as well as sultanas.

  • Snickerdoodles

    • noirem on October 04, 2011

      nice cookies, but they're not snickerdoodles.

    • Sparkles75 on April 19, 2019

      Not snickerdoodles and overall disappointing .

  • Norwegian cinnamon buns

    • trudys_person on March 28, 2020

      Exactly what ElianeW said! These are delicious but I did add significantly more flour than the recipe called for ... Don't eat them all in one sitting!

    • ElianeW on December 19, 2017

      I love this recipe. It's our Christmas morning breakfast. BUT I always find the dough far too wet and add tons more flour to get a proper consistency. There is something wrong with the recipe. Don't panic. Add flour. Oh and don't eat them all in one sitting.

  • Rosemary loaf cake

    • sharifah on February 10, 2018

      Very simple cake and the rosemary adds an unusual taste and smell dimension. I followed the 2 tsp of rosemary exactly, and I think it’s just right... too little and you wouldn’t smell or taste it, and too much would be overpowering. Really nice, would make this again

    • sarahrainey on January 07, 2016

      great and unusual cake

    • anya_sf on July 16, 2019

      Since the batter was already in the mixer, I used that to stir in the flour on low speed, rather than folding it in by hand. For the topping, I rubbed some minced rosemary together with raw sugar. The cake was absolutely delicious. I really loved the rosemary flavor.

  • Passionfruit cheesecake

    • gabriella on April 04, 2012

      I used passion fruit juice from a carton in the main cheesecake mix and this worked fine, although the flavour was probably more subtle than using fresh passion fruit juice.

  • Maple-pecan biscuits

    • melba on August 06, 2021

      I increased the maple extract. Really good short biscuit.

  • Pizza rustica

    • melba on August 06, 2021

      I found the mortadella a little bit overpowering so I omitted it the second time and replaced with extra prosciutto and it was fab.

  • Lemon-raspberry muffins

    • j_h on July 03, 2017

      Used frozen raspberries and didn't have any eggs so tried this - Whisk together 2 tablespoons of water, 1 teaspoon of oil (like corn or vegetable oil) and 2 teaspoons of baking powder. Use this in place of one egg.

    • Livmichelle on September 08, 2017

      Made these today with lime zest, didn't have a lemon, lemon extract and buttermilk super awesome! Lemon-lime buttermilk raspberry muffins.

  • Supper onion pie

    • Hellyloves2cook on October 14, 2013

      Have made this twice now- just wonderful served with a salad.

    • anya_sf on November 07, 2021

      Easy and relatively quick to make. I used half red, half yellow onions as that's what I had. The wider onion pieces looked nice, but made the pie more difficult to cut and eat, so I'd consider slicing the onions thinner next time. The pie took 5 min extra to bake in my oven. My family really liked this pie.

    • Livmichelle on September 08, 2017

      I've made this so many times, no recipe needed now, even onion haters love this pie

    • Ro_ on January 11, 2023

      A great idea because the scone base is so easy to make and cook on the oven. The only thing is that for me I'd have liked a heavier onion-to-crust ratio. I'd be curious to try this with other types of toppings, like maybe cheese-potato-leek?

  • Pink-grapefruit marmalade

  • Buttermilk birthday cake

    • cassiemcgannon on July 10, 2012

      Great as a base for decorated birthday cakes - firm enough to hold large quantities of icing and lollies, but still tastes good.

  • Lemon-syrup loaf cake

    • cassiemcgannon on March 02, 2013

      Exactly what the description sounds like - quite plain but great texture and very lemony.

    • Sigmax on November 09, 2019

      As with many Nigella recipes I find it takes a few extra minutes in the oven, but is my go-to lemon loaf cake recipe.

  • Easy almond cake

    • KarinaFrancis on August 20, 2013

      I love this cake, its moist and almondy. I've tinkered with the flavourings - orange rind and orange flower water as well as orange rind and rosewater. All of the combinations work beautifully. Goes very well as a posh dessert with some quinces roasted in syrup and a dollop of yogurt.

    • Sigmax on November 14, 2019

      As seen in the book illustration, can sometimes be a challenge to turn out, but is easier and still looks lovely cooked in a plain ring.

  • (Key) lime pie

    • KarinaFrancis on September 09, 2019

      I made the uncooked variation and it was a huge hit, tangy, creamy and surprisingly light. The only thing I’d do differently is add a bit more butter to the crust because it was a little crumbly, but didn’t detract from the taste. Will make it again and work on my piping skills in the meanwhile.

  • Peanut-butter squares

    • rstuart on February 07, 2014

      Another fantastic recipe.. very quick, and wonderful. It always goes quickly when I bring it to a party..

  • Brownies

    • rstuart on February 07, 2014

      These have been my favourite brownie recipe since I first tried it over 10 years ago.. still haven't found anything to beat it. I omit the nuts due to personal taste..

    • Ro_ on April 24, 2020

      Probably the best brownie recipe I've found yet. I like the fact it uses only real chocolate and not cocoa powder. These came out super squidgy, which my partner said was perfect but I'd probably increase cooking time ever so slightly next time just to get them a bit firmer. I omitted the nuts and added some white chocolate chips instead.

  • Blueberry muffins

    • MiChal.626 on October 14, 2013

      We make this ALOT, usually in a doughnut pan.

    • Sparkles75 on April 19, 2019

      Great blueberry muffin recipe.

  • Strawberry shortcakes

    • joneshayley on June 03, 2018

      Very good recipe! Easy, delicious and impressive. I’ll make them for any afternoon tea

  • Jam-doughnut muffins

    • joneshayley on August 19, 2018

      Ridiculously easy and delicious.

  • Cherry-almond loaf cake

    • Foodycat on March 16, 2020

      This sort of cherry cake is one of my husband's favourites. This is a good one - very buttery, very eggy, lots of cherries. The natural dye cherries are a must - they actually have flavour. For some reason though mine had quite a big airbubble in the middle, which was annoying.

  • Cranberry curd

    • Foodycat on December 22, 2023

      I went a bit off-piste with this one - subbed the juice of a clementine for some of the water, added the finely grated zest and reduced the sugar to 350g. My eggs were huge so I only used 5. I felt a bit nervous about just trusting my eye on when it thickened, so I checked some other places which agreed that it should go to 77C, so I used a thermometer and pulled it off then - it took a really long time to jump those last 10 degrees! Lovely flavour, lovely colour, lovely consistency. It makes lots so next time I will halve the recipe.

  • Damp lemon and almond cake

    • sarahr428 on October 23, 2014

      I cook this almost every week for our small hotel, I up the quantity a bit to 250g of butter/sugar/almond mainly because i think my lemons are probably twice the size of nigellas.. if it looks a bit runny dont worry it always comes out perfectly.. and i use almond that has its skin on which gives it a bit of colour and a slightly nuttier taste

  • Sausage and spinach pie

    • KateW on December 10, 2015

      Pastry is very good, an easy filling and freezes well. Would be good on a picnic

  • Courgette and chick pea filo pie

    • Charlotte_vandenberg on March 28, 2021

      This dish looks beautiful, but I found the taste a bit bland.

    • Livmichelle on September 08, 2017

      This pie is my go to veggie dish, it looks beautiful and tastes great too

  • Tarte tatin

    • Charlotte_vandenberg on September 03, 2018

      Excellent recipe, very easy, especially since I used store bought puff pastry this time. Used a different pan for caramelizing the apples, but have a tarte tatin pan on my wish list now.

  • Cheese blintzes

    • Lepa on June 17, 2021

      Just for the record, I did not feel like a domestic goddess when I was making these. The recipe says there will be twelve crepes but I got nine. Maybe mine were too big. But I still couldn't fit all the filling into the too-big crepes. They broke and got messy when I rolled them. That said, it was all okay when they came out of the oven. They were utterly delicious with the toppings (powdered sugar, sour cream and blueberry sauce). I will make this again. . but I may wait a few months!

  • American breakfast pancakes

    • embk27 on May 07, 2016

      Brilliant recipe - can just whizz everything up in the food processor and the batter is ready to go. Perfect for hungry five-year-olds demanding pancakes at 6am!

    • Sparkles75 on April 19, 2019


  • Dense chocolate loaf cake

    • embk27 on April 07, 2018

      Lovely squidgy cake - best served warm. I used milk chocolate instead of dark and came out fine.

    • Ro_ on March 28, 2021

      Loved this! Made 3/4 of the recipe for my silicon loaf mould, it came out really well. Moist, chocolately but holding together. We ate with strawberries and ice cream as she suggested. Will make again.

  • Carrot cupcakes with cream-cheese icing

    • lou_weez on October 19, 2021

      I found these were dry and the quantities for the icing were out - 250g of icing sugar to 125g of cream cheese would be very sweet.

  • Burnt-butter brown-sugar cupcakes

    • Melyinoz on June 23, 2020

      I really like the cupcake recipe. The burnt butter adds a lovely richness to the taste. In my experience, the butter took a long time solidify again, so take that into consideration. I successfully made these gluten free by adding an extra teaspoon of baking powder. I ensured the extra teaspoon of baking powder and tapioca starch added up to 50g then made up the additional 100g with brown rice flour. The icing, however, was way too sweet for my taste. I felt like it gave me diabetes from eating one cupcake. Luckily, I hadn’t iced all the cupcakes and I will leave the rest plain and have them with marscapone and banana, or some other combination I can conjure up from my supplies.

  • Granny Boyd's biscuits

    • Melyinoz on November 29, 2020

      Made these GF by replacing flour with 8g baking powder, 92g tapioca flour, 100g red sorghum flour, 100g brown rice flour. The biscuits have come up very short and about 5-6 broke when transferring them to the rack to cool. They are cooling now and hopefully will firm up a bit, otherwise I may need to repurpose them as a crumb base for another dish.

  • Welshcakes

    • anya_sf on July 07, 2019

      Note that the online recipe is the US version (which is what I followed). Since the instructions say to chill the dough at least 20 minutes, I made it the night before. The dough was too dry, so I had to add a couple of tablespoons of milk for it to come together. My cutter was 3.5" across, so I only got 12 cakes. Nigella doesn't say what the griddle temperature should be; 325 F seemed about right. The welshcakes turned out tender, crumbly, and sweet. We enjoyed them very much for breakfast.

  • Finnish rye bread

    • anya_sf on May 28, 2020

      I made the recipe from the U.S. edition. Although Nigella describes this bread as dense and dark, it's actually rather light for rye bread (it's mixed with white bread flour), and it isn't sourdough like traditional Finnish ryes. I used medium rye flour and instant yeast. This bread was easy and fairly quick to make. Although it's not sourdough, it had a bit of tang from the rye. It made delicious avocado toast.

  • Flora's famous courgette cake

    • Livmichelle on September 08, 2017

      I've made this many times, so good!

  • Soot's flapjacks

    • Ro_ on March 26, 2020

      I was very grateful that I read the note on here that pointed out the printing error in the book (should be 150g golden syrup, not 50g) because otherwise I'd have blindly followed what was written. Thank you very much to that note-leaver. These flapjacks were nice, but not the best ever. Slightly too dry/biscuity, I'd have liked them to be a bit gooier and squidgier, and hold together slightly better. I drizzled some melted chocolate on top, just because I'm a chocaholic.

    • kshell on July 10, 2023

      I would sum this up as taste is good but texture is lacking. I am in the US cooking from the UK edition and despite using the correct amount of golden syrup (150g) these always turn out dry and crumble when I cut them. I eat it like dessert granola. Have tried rolled oats and quick-cooking. Didn't make a difference. I am chasing a memory of the one flapjack I ever ate while on vacation. Like Ro_ I too would like them to be gooier and squidgier. I'll keep looking.

  • Chocolate mousse cake

    • Ro_ on February 27, 2023

      I made a smaller version of this, halving the recipe and using a smaller tin. I loved the result but even though I only cooked it for 40m it was ever so slightly over in terms of the top and the cooked-ness of the moussey interior. Didn't bother with the foil method suggested by Nigella, and just wrapped the exterior of the tin in foil instead. Would do again.

  • Irish blue biscuits

    • Ro_ on February 27, 2023

      I was surprised by the texture of these: less like biscuits and more like a kind of rough puff pastry affair. They were nice but I'm not sure I'd make them again compared to other similar recipes I've preferred.

  • Chocolate cupcakes

    • Ro_ on November 24, 2019

      Very nice chocolate cupcake recipe. I made a mistake and added two eggs instead of one (since it's a little annoying, you have to keep flipping between the method on the previous page and the quantities/ingredients on the next page, I got confused) but managed to save it. These were moist and chocolaty. I had ricotta cheese to use up so improvised a ricotta-cocoa buttercream icing, which was also nice. I'd definitely use this recipe again.

  • Garlic and parsley hearthbreads

    • Ro_ on March 06, 2023

      My dough didn't rise that much and I think was wetter than it was supposed to be, but actually the texture of it turned out to be great. The problem was that all the parsley on the top burned and got quite bitter, and it wasn't particularly close to the top of the oven or anything. I guess next time I'd watch closely and cover with foil when it started to turn? Otherwise the flavours were nice.

  • The essential white loaf

    • Ro_ on April 01, 2020

      I made this with bread flour that was very out of date but smelled fine and was weevil-free (probably because it had been stored in an air-tight kilner jar). The loaf was quite close-textured, but apart from that very nice and easy to make.

  • Coconut cake

    • ChelseaP on May 22, 2021

      One of the most delicious and moist coconut cakes.

  • Cream-cheese brownies

    • ChelseaP on May 22, 2021

      Growing up my mum would make these all the time and now I make them too. That middle layer of cream cheese make these so decadent and creamy.

  • Snickers and peanut-butter muffins

    • JJ2018 on November 17, 2019

      These were nice but quite a savoury taste and they just weren’t quite as amazing as i wanted them to be. The ‘snickers’ taste didn’t come through as strongly as I’d have liked I think

  • Spiced apple chutney

    • etcjm on September 23, 2018

      Cooked with 2 'normal' red chillies instead of birds eye. Quite hot enough thank you. Sure this will be enjoyed as Nigella quite rightly says with some pastry. Be interesting to see how it matures.

  • Chocolate macaroons

    • etcjm on May 09, 2019

      First macaroons to not end up in the bin. I hate piping things but you know what I was a bit proud! Yummy. Will do again. Hated spending so much on these having given up because the family love them. Bring it on for the next ones!

  • Marzipan fruit cake

    • Sigmax on November 09, 2019

      Moist and luscious. A pre-Christmas cake in our house.

  • Greengage jam

    • Glinys on July 26, 2020

      Nigella actually states Jam sugar which is different from preserving sugar- at least it is in the UK. Good straightforward recipe and nice chunky jam with a good set.

  • Rosebud madeleines

    • JJOca on February 13, 2023

      The rosewater adds a lovely twist to these, and I will look out for a mini-madeleine tin for the next time I bake these. As I find with most Nigella recipes, it just works. Also, I have to admit that the uncooked batter is delicious... ..uncooked flour dangers aside!

  • Gateau Breton

    • Crowmama on February 05, 2022

      This recipe uses cake flour not plain flour.

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  • ISBN 10 0099288869
  • ISBN 13 9780099288862
  • Published Aug 17 1998
  • Format Paperback
  • Page Count 384
  • Language English
  • Countries United Kingdom
  • Publisher Chatto & Windus
  • Imprint Vintage

Publishers Text

In the busy, stressful life of the modern woman, there could be more feelgood mileage from running up a tray of muffins or baking a cake than in almost any other cooking. But we're so busy making efficient, 'modern' food, that we too easily forget, what Nigella demonstrates in this mouthwatering and deliciously reassuring cookbook, that actually it's not hard to make a cake, that the appreciation and satisfaction it brings are out of all proportion to the little effort involved. A domestic goddess has to maintain her cool when faced with pastry - but with Nigella's guidance even shortcrust pastry can be pretty pain-free. Here at last is the book which understands our anxieties, feeds our fantasies and puts cakes, pies, pastries, preserves, puddings, bread and biscuits back into today's kitchen and our lives. Everything from cup cakes to certosino, from brownies to bagels, from peach cream pie to pizza, chewy amaretti to Blueberry boy-bait, from baklava to a Barbie cake, as well as children's cooking, Christmas baking and other family treats.

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