What Nadiya Hussain Wishes Beginning Bakers Knew

While she has since expanded her culinary repertoire beyond the world of baked goods, baking is where cookbook author and television personality Nadiya Hussain got her start in the industry. For those who have not been fans since the show's very beginning, Hussain was a contestant on the popular cooking competition show "The Great British Bake Off." After winning the sixth season of the show (we'd highly recommend watching the full season, to be honest!), Hussain has gone on to have an illustrious career in the industry — and she has one important thing she wishes bakers just starting out knew (via Nadiya Hussain).

While Hussain herself can whip up complex pastries and incredible cakes without breaking a sweat, she urges beginners who are just dipping their toes into the baking world to start with something very simple (via PopSugar). While she's honest about the fact that everyone makes mistakes in the kitchen, she thinks beginning with a simple recipe can help prevent a new baker from having their confidence too rattled by trying an incredibly difficult recipe and struggling with it or failing to make anything edible at all. In fact, she suggests bakers who are just getting started begin with something unbaked, like a rocky road recipe, as they can practice the skills of measuring and mixing and waiting, without all the complexities of an item in the oven and its nitpicky bake time.

A few more tips from baking pro Nadiya Hussain

Beyond keeping things simple when you are first getting comfortable in the kitchen, Nadiya Hussain has a few more tips that any baker can incorporate, and many of them have to do with mindset more than actual technique or skill in the kitchen. First of all, while she does suggest bakers build their confidence by not tackling complicated recipes right from the get go, Hussain also says that the only way to really improve at baking is, well, practice — to bake, and then bake some more (via BBC)! She also lauds bravery in the kitchen, emphasizing bakers shouldn't be afraid to put their own twist on recipes, mixing up the flavors according to what they prefer, or swapping out elements in classic recipes to give a cake or other pastry a bit of a twist. As she told BBC, "Recipes are there to be mucked around with, and that's what I encourage everyone to do."

She also warns bakers that a good recipe doesn't need to involve a laundry list of different ingredients that require multiple expensive trips to the store. Instead, it's often about simply making the most of certain ingredients with simple tips, like toasting spices or roasting nuts to enhance their natural flavors. Think about it — some of the baked goods we all know and love are actually very simple in terms of ingredients. You don't need much to make a total showstopper.