Donna Hay Answers Your Cooking Questions

Donna Hay chats to LifeStyle Channel viewers and offers her best cooking tips.

kathhh: Hi Donna, what other fruits do you recommend for the galette?

Donna Hay: You can use firm pears and apples in the cooler months and any stone fruits in the summer months. Berries are too soft and have too much liquid so if you want to use them just use a sprinkling over the top in combination with another fruit.

Sharon: Love your show!! With the ice-cream sandwich macaroons, can they be stored in an airtight container for up to 24hrs or do they need to be served on the day? I was cooking for friends on the weekend and wanted to make them for dessert but wanted to cook the night before (I have a 6 month old and 2.5yr old so like to prepare as much in advance as I can when cooking for friends at the moment). I didn't make them in case leaving the macaroons overnight would spoil them. I have your 'Fast, Fresh, Simple' recipe book - are all the recipes you cook on tv in the book? Thank you for a great series. Sharon

Donna Hay: Hi Sharon - you can make the coconut macaroons up to 3 days ahead of time and store them between absorbent paper in an air tight container. All the recipes from the series are in the book although there are extras in the book that I just couldn't fit into the series.

Victoria: Hi Donna, I made the carbonara last night with egg fettucine and thickened cream im wondering if those two things made it taste very cheddary or was it the type of store bought parmesan

Donna Hay: Hi Victoria, I am guessing it was your parmesan.

Sharon: Thank you :)

Jennifer: Donna, just wondering if sweet/savoury souffle mixture can be prepared beforehand, placed in the moulds in the fridge and then cooked when required. Would this be okay a few hours before?

Donna Hay: Hi Jennifer - unfortunately not. Prepare the souffles up until the bit where you need to beat the egg whites. You will have to do this and then fold them through the mixture just before cooking.

N4: Hi Donna, I just love those big glass cannisters you have in your pantry - are they available in your shop?

Donna Hay: Yes they are - and in two sizes

Goldi: Hi Donna, I have difficulty with poaching eggs. They never seem to be as formed as they should be, do you have any suggestions? Thanks

Donna Hay: That's a tough one! The freshest eggs make the best poached eggs and the whites are nice and thick. I use a frypan on a slow simmer. I find that if I crack the eggs into a cup first and then pour them in from there they stay together better - good luck!

kudos: Hi Donna, can you advise what you did to make sure the souffles didn't collapse once you took them out of the oven?

Donna Hay: No tricks here just be quick - souffle waits for no one.

Victoria: Great thanks and to increase to serve for four would I just double everything use four egg yolks?

Donna Hay: Yes, just double everything.

Victoria: Thanks so much, love the show im just waiting for my book to arrive.

kezza42: Hello Donna, may l ask were you got your honey jar from?

Donna Hay: It is an egg coddling jar (i think that is what it is called) it has been in my prop room for a long time, sorry cant remember where from.

Dustin2: Hi Donna. After watching your show i now cook everything on baking paper. OMG it’s changed my life. Nothing sticks and washing up is simple. Thank you x

Pauline53: Hi Donna, I just love the show, my sister and I have tried many of the recipes. I'm just wondering what brand of pots and pans you use? Do you like induction stoves?

Donna Hay: At the moment I am using Gordon Ramsay for Royal Doulton. He has a really heavy duty range that is tri-ply thickness. They cook really evenly. And I prefer a gas stove top, it's just what I am used to.

Goldi: Thanks Donna, I love your magazines especially the kids ones- I am making the blue smartie number three cake from your last kids mag for my sons third birthday. Can you please reprint the first two issues of your kid’s magazines as I missed out while I was living in London for a bit!

Shelleymc: Hi Donna Just wondering about cooking with chocolate does it have to be cooking chocolate? I had trouble with the chocolate dome in the last kid’s issue.

Donna Hay: I find quality cooking chocolate easier to work with but you may also have success with good quality eating chocolate.

Sherree4: Yes, good suggestion Goldi! I dont have the first two issues as I didnt have kids to bake for then.

kezza42: Thanks Donna enjoyed your show & looking forward to more shows.

Jen Slav: Hi Donna, I absolutely love your show and have been cooking your exact recipes. Tonight you cooked a Goat's Cheese Souffle. Although I am a huge cheese lover, I am not a fan of goat’s chese. Is there a substitute cheese I can use for this stunning recipe?

Donna Hay: That's a hard one. Without taking back to the test kitchen I couldn't be 100% sure. It works with the softness of the goat’s cheese and I found it needed the flavour too.

HelenBeattie: I always get confused when recipes say green onions or shallots. With diffent names being used by different states how do we know which ones to use?

Donna Hay: Ahhh I know this one drive me a bit crazy too. Green onions to me are the long thin onions, spring onions are similar but have the bulb at the end and a stronger taste and shallots to me are the brown or red french eshallots.

HelenBeattie: Thanks :)

Shaneo: Hi Donna Can you please give me some really easy chocolate recipes to try.

Donna Hay: I am sure there are a load on the LifeStyle channel website otherwise hop on over to

HelenBeattie: Where do we find your shop?

Donna Hay: Online at or at 40 Holdsworth St Woollahra Sydney

Pauline53: Hi Donna, what dish do you still find really hard to get right?

Donna Hay: Scones - I just don't seem to have the right touch for them.

N4: What is your favourite lunch to send your children off to school with?

Donna Hay: Something they will eat!!! Kids are hard they change their mind on their new favourite food like the wind.

HelenBeattie: Thanks, I can see a trip to the other side of the harbour in my future.

Shelleymc: Just wondering if you spend much time at your store? I am sure you get bombarded on a daily basis but would love to bring my daughter in to meet you one day :-)

Pauline53: Who is your favourite celebrity chef?

Donna Hay: Jamie Oliver

ellesweetp: Hi Donna just wondering what pear is the best for poaching? Starting to get to that kind of weather.Nice comfort food.

Donna Hay: I find firm brown pears are the best for poaching

Lilrachee: Hi Donna, loving the new show. You look fantastic and was wondering where you shop for your clothes???

Donna Hay: Lots of different places and I am a mad online shopper as well! For basics I like Country Road and Bassike.

ellesweetp: Thanks so much will check some out on the weekend

N4: I just wanted to say how inspirational you are - two years ago you gave my then seven-year-old a copy of your kid’s issue at a Food Show, she still uses it and has now developed the most amazing love of cooking! She is very particular when 'plating' the food so I sense another food stylist in the works!! Thank you for your inspiration!

Donna Hay: You are welcome - thank you for your nice words of support.

Goldi: Thank you Donna for all the great kid’s meals in your magazines, frittatas are great! I love all the receipes on your show especially the hamburger from last week-yum. I find your receipes inspirational and I love your colour scheme in your kitchenware.

Elizabeth: Hi Donna, love your show & your work! I was just wondering if you have considered are in the process of creating an iphone app with your fast, fresh, simple recipes - it would be perfect for busy mums . . .

Donna Hay: Hi Elizabeth, yes we are in the process of doing just that. Check soon for updates

Shelleymc: An iphone app would be great - I actually did a search on the app store tonight to see if there was one!

Lilrachee: Hi Donna, just wondering when the next kid’s magazine will hit the shelves?

Donna Hay: The rest of the mag team will kill me for not remembering the on sale date. We have just started working on it now so it is still a few months off. Will post the answer on my facebook tomorrow when I get to the office.

Lilrachee: Thanks for the live chat Donna. Loving all of the information you are sharing with us!

Shelleymc: Congrats on the show Donna I record it so my daughter and I can watch together on Wednesday nights and plan what to make on the weekend :-)

Donna Hay: What is a nice thing to do together, unfortunately my sons still just want to make chocolate cake!

Lilrachee: What’s your favourite dish to cook?

Donna Hay: I honestly don't have a favourite, I just love to cook.

Elizabeth: Fantastic, is it possible to include an addition to the app. where we could add our own recipes and possible the ability to share recipes with friends? With cooking being so hot right now (excuse the pun), it is very time consuming to share recipes with friends. It would be great just to "bump" recipes with them.

ellesweetp: Ditto on the thanks, love reading all the questions, it’s funny I have loads of questions all the time but now I am a complete blank ha ha.

Dayna2: Hi Donna, just wondering what is your view on artificial sweeteners? Are they worse than normal sugar in the long run?

Donna Hay: Personally, I prefer to use natural ingredients.

Lauren70: Hi Donna, what do you eat for breakfast?

Donna Hay: Whatever is fresh and fast. It's not my favourite time of day getting two small boys fed, dressed and out the door for school. I am a big coffee fan so as long as I have a coffee I am usually okay until I get to the office and swing by the test kitchen.

Lauren70: Who would you love to cook you meal?

Donna Hay: Anyone!

Lauren70: Donna, do you exercise?

Donna Hay: Yes I run and swim when I get the time.

LifeStyle: Thanks everyone for all your questions tonight.

Get Donna Hay - fast, fresh, simple recipes now.

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I have recently made your classic chocolate cake with buttercream. I love the texture, perfect for carving and decorating. How could i adapt this recipe to make it in a vanilla flavour?
Posted by ClairenasrbieberReport
Hi Donna, for my school project I need to know how you use the design process

- Observation and critical analysis
- Research and Investigation
- Idea Generation
- Optimum Selection
- Construction
- Evaluation
Posted by Report
Posted by ClairenasrbieberReport
Hi Donna, for my school project I need to know how you use the design process

- Observation and critical analysis
- Research and Investigation
- Idea Generation
- Optimum Selection
- Construction
- Evaluation
Posted by ClairenasrbieberReport
Hi Donna, for my school project I need to know how you use the design process
- Observation and critical analysis
- Research and Investigation
- Idea Generation
- Optimum Selection
- Construction
- Evaluation
Posted by Brydie5Report
Hi my name is Brydie and I am doing a school project on you and I was wondering what is your favourite dish to cook?