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Q&A with GBBO's Nadiya Hussain

(93 Posts)
LucyGransnet (GNHQ) Mon 22-Aug-16 10:45:33

We're very excited to have the lovely Nadiya Hussain answering all your questions on baking, GBBO and her new book, Nadiya's Bake Me A Story.

Winner of the 2015 Great British Bake Off, Nadiya needs very little introduction after wowing us all with her fantastic bakes last year <remember the fizzy drink cake?!> Here's more about her new book...

Nadiya’s Bake Me a Story is the first children's book from the star of the UK’s most-watched and BAFTA-winning TV show of 2015, Great British Bake Off winner and nation's sweetheart, Nadiya Hussain.

This unique hybrid of storybook and cookbook contains recipes and stories devised and written by Nadiya herself. Nadiya's Bake Me a Story brings families into the kitchen to spend time sharing stories and cooking. Get messy making yummy bean patties, and while they are in the oven, curl up with the story of Jack and the Bean Pattiestalk, or read about Ruby-Red and the Three Bears and their Very Berry Muffins while you wait for your own to bake!

Like her bakes, Nadiya’s stories themselves all have a sprinkling of something original. We have The Princess and the Pea and Mint Risotto, or Sleepless Beauty, who is cursed to never sleep again, until she comes across a magical mug of hot chocolate with cardamom...

Nadiya's Bake Me A Story will be published on 8 September in hardback priced £14.99 by Hodder Children's Books, and we've got one signed copy to give away to someone who asks a question on the thread. Leave yours for Nadiya below by midday on 5 September.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:48:28


I loved The first episode of The Chronicles of Nadiya and loved it. What a lovely family. Looking forward to next week.
My question stems from the latest Bake Off thread on Gransnet. We see Paul and Mary cutting a large slice of cake and trying a little. What happens to the rest?

The crew are like gannets, they inhale everything. Nothing gets thrown away.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:48:48


I loved watching The Chronicles of Nadiya. Bangladeshi village life was fascinating and I even enjoyed the Luton shots as I lived there for the first ten years of my married life. You made an interesting point about the concept of home. What did you miss most, apart from your family of course, when you were in Bangladesh?

Whenever I am in Bangladesh I always miss the feeling of carpet under my feet and my very clean bathroom.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:49:11


Love the sound of the book smile I found your use of spices on GBBO fascinating, especially when Paul was so sceptical and then they worked!

My question is what has your biggest baking disaster been?

I baked a liquid cake in a loose bottom tin…so I baked a cake in the bottom of the oven and the cake tin was empty!

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:49:35


Hi Nadiya

Do you have any suggestions for healthy food to tempt a very fussy 5 year old who'd live on snacks if he had his way?

I always encourage my children to join me in the kitchen and if your little one enjoys snacks why not take those snacks and see if they can be transformed into a meal?

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:49:50


What desert looks difficult but is really easy to make?

Fondants look difficult but actually can be really easy if you take your time - you should get that gorgeous liquid centre.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:50:09


i struggle with puff pastry - getting the perfect rise. Any tips?

Make sure to chill between each turn. If you don’t do this the butter melts into the dough and can prevent rise. I always make rough puff if I’m in a rush and that is a great way to get amazing pastry with less stress.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:50:24


I'd like to ask Nadiya if she has a secret for making Macarons, I always seem to end up with funny shapes and don't get the baking times correct.

Macarons are tricky and take practice. I would say don’t give up. I made macarons 11 times before I got them right and even now they can still go wrong.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:51:07


Hello Nadiya congratulations on your new book. It sounds a lovely idea.

Do you cook anything special for your Grandparents?.
I bet they have a few favourite Nadia recipes!.
Did you have a favourite food that your grandparents or parents would cook when you were a child?
Do have a comfort food that you go to when you feel sad or missing home?

One last question
will your grandparents be checking out Grandsnet?
They will be very welcome

My grandma only eats rice and curry so that’s something she is used to eating but she loves it when I make her cinnamon Arlettes. I love tripe and my mum cooks it really well. It’s my favourite thing to eat especially as it’s every now and then. Comfort food for me is a chicken potato curry with rice.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:51:37


Hi again, I have another question smile

And apologies in advance for asking a baker about sugar! But I have been reading an article in the Times Magazine where you write about making your own peanut butter, and you mention using agave syrup.

To impress my daughter-in-law Trying to do the right thing as a grandmother, I had bought agave syrup for baking but then a thread on these very forums put me right off it!

I have now bought a bottle of fruit syrup (from Lidl, made from apples, grapes and carob) which I hope will be the healthy option for sweetening.

Is it an ongoing battle with you as a mum and a baker of cakes to find healthy alternatives to sugar?

I tend not to use alternatives unless I am cooking for allergies or lifestyle of religious choices. I’m trying to teach my children that sugar is bad for you if you overindulge, but in moderation with exercise it’s totally fine

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:51:53


Hi Nadiya?

If you could only make one pudding for the rest of your life what would it be?

Jam roly poly

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:52:11


Have your grandparents passed you down an recipes?

The recipes that I cook that are traditional are the ones I have learnt from my grandma, mum and dad. These are recipes I have written down for my children.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:52:30


Have you religiously made homemade birthday cakes for your children every year? if not, when and why?

Not every year - we have had birthday pizzas, cookies and cakes. We mix it up each year.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:52:53


Hi Nadiya,

Great to see your continued success post Bake Off. Whats your favourite recipe to make with your children?

We love making one pot dishes like an Irish stew but we also love making classics like Victoria sponges and carrot cakes.

NadiyaHussain Wed 07-Sep-16 10:53:14


Nadiya I did enjoy watching you bake on GBBO, and particularly your wonderful facial expressions!!

DGS enjoys baking with mummy, but recipes have to be gluten-free in the main, as DD is coeliac.
Are there any gf recipes in your book? There was the occasional gf recipe on Bake Off, but not that many, and people who are coeliacs enjoy baking cakes with their DC and eating them too.

ps have you heard of banana flour? - apparently it doesn't taste of bananas!

All the recipes can be altered with like-for-like amounts of rice flour and gluten free flour.

CariGransnet (GNHQ) Wed 07-Sep-16 14:35:20

PS news on our signed book winner to follow!

LucyGransnet (GNHQ) Mon 12-Sep-16 11:57:45

Congratulations to Purpledaffodil who has won the signed copy of Nadiya's book! Do look out for an email form us in your inbox smile

Rangsta13th Thu 28-Dec-17 15:54:22

I was a great fan of you Nadia, until you cooked a dish with orange zest and said your mother came out with it. LIAR!!! It's a Bengali ingredient that orange zest, and people in Bangladesh have been eating that recipe from when Bangladesh used to be India... shame in you Nadia for lying and stealing a recipe which was not invented or created by your mother!!!