The actress best known for playing sharp-tongued matriarch Zainab Masood has been off sick for two weeks and is missing the on-set banter with the rest of the EastEnders cast.
Adam Woodyatt is a particular favourite "to get in trouble with" she says, but right now she's having fun with Marc Elliot who arrives on our screens in May playing Zainab's son Syed.
"He's so naughty because I just can't stop laughing. We're in so much trouble all the time. We're uncontrollable," she says, beaming.
The two have even made up a rumour that there will be an incest storyline between the two and have tried to hoodwink cast and crew into falling for it.
"We spread that rumour around the set because it's so hysterical. I'm not that much older than him and he's playing a 24-year-old, I know I look old on screen but this is ridiculous!" she laughs.
But 41-year-old Nina is used to playing mother characters - having done so in Skins and Goodness Gracious Me as well as EastEnders.
She's so used to it in fact, that when the script for I Can't Think Straight landed on her desk she did a double take when she saw she was being considered for the part of housekeeper rather than the film's archetypal 'Indian mother'.
"I wondered why they didn't cast me for that. I was there going, 'I could have done this or that with the role' but in a way I'm glad because I've done those before," she says.
Instead she plays a cheeky maid who gets her own back on her domineering mistress in her own quiet way, despite only having a few lines in the film.
"It is a very different role to Zainab but she does have a slightly evil streak like Zainab does," Nadia says.
"The nice thing about character parts is you can just go to town on them. When everyone else is quite serious. You need that bit of comic relief," she says of her role in the film, which is billed as 'just another British, Indian, Muslim, Arab, Christian, lesbian romantic comedy'.
While the film is a romantic comedy, at its core is the issue of the difficulties some gay Muslim and Hindu people face when they come out.
Nina, who is from the Indian Parsi community, has anecdotal evidence of this.
"I've got a lot of gay, Hindu and Muslim friends and they did find it hard to come out, not all of them have. A lot are still playing the game of 'yeah I'll get married someday mum'."
TV and film have got better at tackling these sorts of issues, and Nina is proud of the part she has played.
"People complained before because in the real East End there are a lot of Indian and Pakistani people and EastEnders wasn't reflective, so they have tried to do that now," she says, citing the presence of the Masoods as evidence.
She adds that the family's storylines are likely to improve now because viewers have had time to get to know the family. Zahra Ahmadi, who played Zainab and Masood's daughter Shabnam, left the soap last year amid rumours she was frustrated with the lack of good plotlines for the family.
Nina explains there was a good reason for the lack of meaty stories.
"It has been a long time coming - I've been there almost two years - but I give them credit because they said when you introduce soap characters slowly, people tend to like storylines that happen to them further down the line. They understand the characters and they can empathise with them. If I came in with a massive storyline, they'd be like 'who is this woman and why do we care about her?'"
With Syed returning, Nina hints that he is bound to stir things up in the Square.
"Even though he is a bit of a rogue, at the same time he's very charming and he can convince you you're eating cheese when you're actually eating a slice of bread - he's that kind of character.
"The hardest thing for Zainab will be convincing Masood to let him back into the family. More than anything else the big fights will be between Masood and Syed - they're going to have major issues," she reveals.
It seems strange that Zainab would take the backseat during the family drama, because she has joined the long list of Albert Square battleaxes.
"So many of my friends say 'I hate your character' but they love to hate her," Nina giggles.
"They love when she comes on screen because they get to bitch and moan about her and I'm really proud that I've managed to provoke some kind of reaction in people when they put the TV on."
She gets stopped in the supermarket by people who congratulate her on how funny Zainab is.
"That means the world to me because I know I've done my job, and I like that, in a soap which has some pretty dramatic storylines, there is some light relief as well because, like with the housekeeper, it's providing people an outlet from relentless drama. She's blunt, she's in your face, and people like that about her," she says.
Zainab also seems to attract a number of more amorous fans.
"I get a massive amount of fan mail from Germany and from US soldiers - they love Zainab," Nina says.
"It's really complimentary - there are a couple of naughty ones. Some of them say 'I don't suppose you can come and meet us with a whip in your hand..?' What do people think of her?!" she laughs.
Nina Wadia - Extra Time
Nina is married to composer Raiomond Mirza. They have two children, aged five and two.
"I'm reliving my youth with them a bit, it makes me feel like I'm holiday when I'm at work," she says.
"It's a lot of fun but it's exhausting - any parent will tell you that."
Nina played the mother of Dev Patel's character in Skins and is delighted with the success he has had with Slumdog Millionaire.
"I'm so proud of him, it couldn't happened to a nicer guy," she says.
She had a minor role in Gurinder Chadha's hit Bend It Like Beckham, playing a wedding guest.
She is as friendly with Diane Parish, who plays Denise Wicks in EastEnders as the two characters are in the soap.