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What Judi and Linton had for dinner...

This page started of as a description of what Linton and I had for dinner (with recipes). The novelty wore off pretty quickly, but there are still some yummy recipes.

Yes I know, I've been awfully bad at keeping this page up to date :-(
To make up for it, here is a recipe for Creole Christmas Cake by Delia Smith, that I regularly make.
Delia describes it as more fruit than cake and more booze than fruit :-)

I never follow the recipe directly, instead I throw in what fruit and booze I have available. The magic touch is to include lots of dried chilli peppers (not I'm not kidding!), especially the raisiny tasting ones like pasillas.

Creole Christmas Cake

One week before cooking the cake, add all these ingredients to a large cooking pot:

Fruit and booze mix
bullet 1 lb raisins
bullet 2 oz nuts, chopped
bullet 2 oz cherries,
bullet 4 oz prunes, pitted
bullet 8 oz currants
bullet 4 oz candied peel
bullet 1.5 t vanilla essence
bullet 1.5 t Angostura Bitters
bullet 1 T dark Barbados sugar
bullet 1/2 t cinnamon
bullet 1/2 t cloves
bullet 1/2 t nutmeg
bullet 1/2 t salt
bullet 3 T brandy
bullet 3 T rum, dark
bullet 3 T cherry brandy
bullet 3 T port
bullet 3 T water

Simmer on a low heat for 15 minutes, cool, then store in a container in the fridge for a week. The fruit should have soaked up all of the liquid.

Cake ingredients
bullet 9 oz butter, softened
bullet 9 oz demerera sugar
bullet 9 oz flour
bullet 5 eggs
bullet fruit and booze mix

To prepare the cake: line a cake tin, pre-heat oven to gas mark 1 or equivalent, then mix the butter, sugar, flour, and eggs together. When combined, add fruit and mix for a couple of minutes. Put mixture into cake tin and cook for 3-4 hours until centre springs back when lightly pressed.

Index of Recipes
Calzone Cordon Bleu Schnitzel Craig's Chocolate Rum Slice
Focaccia Bread Pseudo-Tandoori Chicken Pumpkin Bread
Quick and Easy Nachos Roast chicken and potatoes Linton's Spicy Spare Ribs
Two inch thick pizza Banana Blueberry Muffins Roast beef
Ginger, coriander, & orange bread Chocolate Cherry Muffins David's Carrot & Dill Soup

1 September 1995

I have finally extracted long promised recipes from David and Craig.

David's Carrot and Dill Soup

  • knob of butter
  • 1 onion
  • 5 carrots
  • 2 potatoes
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • nutmeg to taste
  • 250 ml milk
  • lots of chopped fresh dill

Dice all the vegetables. Saute onion in butter then add carrots and potatoes. Add stock and seasonings then simmer for one hour. Blend, process, or mulee until smooth. Add milk. Reheat but do not boil. Add dill then serve.

Craig's Chocolate Rum Slice

Based on a recipe from the Australian Women's Weekly Recipe Card Library.

bullet 250 g packet of plain sweet biscuits
bullet 125 g butter
bullet 1 T cocoa

Crush biscuits, add cocoa and butter and mix. Press into a foil lined tin (approx. 18 cm x 28 cm). Refridgerate while preparing filling.

bullet 200 g marshmallows
bullet 1/2 C milk
bullet at least 125 g dark chocolate
bullet at least 4 T rum
bullet 3 t gelatine
bullet 1 T water
bullet 2 C cream
bullet 1 C cream for whipping
bullet 30 g dark chocolate for decoration

Melt marshmallows, milk and chopped chocolate in a double boiler, stirring all the time. Add rum and cool. Sprinkle gelatine over the water, dissolve over hot water then add to marshmallow mixture. Pour over base and refridgerate until set. Decorate with whipped cream and shaved chocolate. Serves 8.

31 August 1995

Popped into Hallelijuah Cafe for dinner on the way to the movie Clerks. I had chicken lasagne which was simple but very nice, Linton had calzone which apparently was not very exciting. Both dinners came with a salad of lettuce and julliened carrots and zucchini in a light vinagrette. Overall, a nice dinner with excellent espresso.

30 August 1995

A quick dinner of roast beef and cheese sandwiches. Dessert was chocolate cherry muffins, adapted from Gloria's Glorious Muffins (ISBN0-89529-528-8).

Chocolate Cherry Muffins

Dry Ingredients Wet Ingredients
2.25 C white flour 0.75 C milk
1.5 t baking powder 0.25 C oil
1 t baking soda 1 egg
0.5 t salt 0.5 C honey, warmed
6 T cocoa powder 2 t vanilla essence
2 C frozen sweet cherries 1 C chocolate chips

Partially thaw the cherries. Preheat oven to 200 degrees C. Sift dry ingredients into a bowl and add chocolate chips. Whisk the wet ingredients. Chop the cherries in a food processor by pulsing once or twice. Do not puree them. Add wet ingredients and cherries to dry ingredients and gently mix until just combined. Spoon into a muffin tray and bake for 15-20 minutes. Great with a cup of espresso!

29 August 1995

Pizza! Made the two inch thick pizza dough again (with rum this time and not gin :-) but split it into two and froze half (bread dough freezes well, freeze after you have kneaded it and given it one rise, thaw out for a couple of hours and continue as normal). Toppings included organic tomato paste, left over roast beef, tomatoes, sliced dried chillis, and lots of edam cheese, ground pepper and thyme.

28 August 1995

We were both exhausted so had a quick dinner of tortilla chips with melted cheese and chilli sauce.

27 August 1995

Had a combined dinner with the next door neighbours. Linton and I cooked roast beef, David cooked roast potatoes and minted peas, and Craig biked down to the shops to get chocolate Movenpick icecream.

Roast Beef

  • 1-2 kg topside beef
  • 2-3 T meat masala paste (curry paste)

Smear beef with paste and place fat side up in a roasting pan. Roast at 160 degrees C for about 90 minutes for medium rare meat. I'm going to buy a meat thermometer so I don't have to guess the time anymore! Let sit for 15 minutes for juices to be absorbed.


Smear meat with a mixture of 1 T olive oil, 1 T mustard powder, and 1 T soya sauce.

26 August 1995

Got up so late that we only got to lunch by the time it was bedtime again.

25 August 1995

Justine invited us to a superb dinner. She served fish and scallops under a blanket of spinach and zucchini, with a white wine, lemon juice and butter sauce. Also, a salad of spinach, tamarillos and red and green pepper, and baked potatoes sprinkled with cayenne pepper. Dessert was pears poached in caramel and ginger with lashings of fresh cream.

24 August 1995

Have been too busy preparing a seminar to do much cooking so Linton made Chicken Tonight tonight with extra veges and jasmine rice.

23 August 1995

Another yummy boil-in-the-bag curry by The Curry Shop. This one was Chicken Tikka. We ate it with lots of basmati rice and poppadoms.

22 August 1995

Very unimaginative dinner of tortilla chips smothered in melted cheese with lots of chilli sauce.

21 August 1995

Baked more bread from the Cranks cookbook. This bread is better the next day.

Fresh Ginger, Coriander & Orange Bread

Adapted from Cranks Bread & Teacakes: ISBN 0-85112-381-3

  • 1.5 t dried yeast
  • 1 T Honey
  • 75 ml tepid water
  • 450 g Wholemeal flour
  • 1 t salt
  • 2 t ground coriander
  • 1 T root ginger, finely grated
  • 150 ml natural yoghurt
  • 4 T (60 ml) boiling water
  • zest of one orange

Mix yeast, honey, and tepid water together and leave in a warm place for 10 minutes until frothy. In a large bowl, mix flour, salt, coriander, and ginger. Mix yoghurt with boiling water and orange rind and add to the dry ingredients with the yeast liquid. Mix to a soft dough then knead for 10 minutes. Place in oiled bowl and cover. Leave in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Knead the dough quickly then transfer to an oiled 900g loaf tin. Cover and let rise until doubled (about 1 hour). Bake at 220 degrees C for 35-40 minutes. Cool. Makes one loaf.

20 August 1995

Had left over pizza.

19 August 1995

Was avoiding work so made muffins and pizza. Decided to try a new pizza dough recipe so I went through my archives of rec.food.cooking recipes. Found this one, but I've lost the reference to the author (except that her name is Katherine). I swear this is the thickest pizza I've ever eaten! The dough is crunchy on the outside and feather soft and fluffy on the inside. More like bread with something on top! Very yummy. Next time I'll use half the amount and make a normal sized pizza (BTW pizza dough freezes well - just defrost then knead for a couple of minutes).

Two inch thick pizza

  • 2 C warm water
  • 1 T dried yeast
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 2 t scotch whisky (I didn't have any so used gin instead :-)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • enough flour to form a soft dough (I used a mixture of High Grade flour and strong white bread flour)

Dissolve sugar in water then add yeast. Leave to froth (10 minutes). Add the rest of the ingredients. Knead for 10 minutes (be careful to only add more flour as you need it). Shape into ball then let rise in an oiled bowl for an hour. Press down carefully to release the air bubbles then transfer upside down onto the bench (be careful not to break the top). Continue to press out air bubbles then shape into a ball and let rest for 5-10 minutes while you prepare the toppings.

  • sliced mushrooms
  • sliced tomatoes
  • sliced salami
  • finely sliced chilles
  • calamata olives
  • heaps of grated edam cheese
  • tomato paste
  • fresh rosemary or other herbs
  • freshly ground pepper

Oil a large pizza tray and sprinkle on coarse cornflour. Press out dough to fit tray, making the edges a bit thicker than the middle. You may want to bake the dough for 5 minutes first so the top doesn't get soggy. Spread on tomato paste and sprinkle with rosemary. Artistically arrange the rest of the toppings except the cheese. Bake for 10 minutes at 220 degrees C. Add cheese then bake for a further 10 minutes or until cheese is bubbling in the middle. Enjoy. (Feeds about four).

Banana Blueberry Muffins

This one is from Alison Holst's Marvellous Muffins cookbook.

  • 2 C flour
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 1/4 t baking soda
  • 1/2 C caster sugar
  • 50 g butter
  • 1/2 milk
  • zest of one orange
  • 1/2 C orange juice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 t vanila
  • 1 large ripe banana
  • 1 C blueberries, fresh or frozen
  • 3 T cinammon sugar (equal quantities of cinammon, brown sugar, and white sugar)

Sieve flour, baking powder and soda, and sugar together. Warm butter, whisk in eggs, milk, orange juice, vanilla, and zest. Mash banana with fork and add to wet mix. Add blueberries to wet mix. Combine wet with dry, carefully folding mixture until just combined. Spoon into muffin tins and sprinkle on cinammon sugar. Bake at 200 degrees C for about 10-20 minutes (until they spring back when pressed, toothpick comes out clean,...). Are better once cooled as the moisture around the berries needs time to disperse evenly.

18 August 1995

Beef and Broccoli Thai Curry

  • 500 g diced beef
  • 1 head of broccoli, broken up into bite sized florets
  • 1 T oil
  • 3 T red curry paste (John West)
  • 240 ml coconut cream (comes in a tetrapak here)
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves
  • fish sauce, to taste
  • 2 t finely sliced lemon grasss (e.g., John West)
  • 2 t coriander leaves (e.g., John West, any one would think I have shares in the company!!)
  • 2 t arrowroot mixed in water
  • additional water

Heat oil in a frying pan and sizzle 2T of the curry paste for a minute or so. Add the beef and stir until browned and coated with paste. Reduce temperature and add coconut cream, kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, and lemon grass. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add extra water then add brocolli. Stir well and cook until broccoli is tender. Add coriander then taste to see if you need to add more curry paste or fish sauce. Thicken sauce with arrowroot if necessary. Serve with rice. (Feeds about three).

17 August 1995

A really yummy boil-in-the-bag Murgh Makhani curry by The Curry Shop with lots of basmati rice, carrots, yoghurt and poppadoms (hint cook poppadoms in the microwave for 30-60 seconds, no need for extra oil).

16 August 1995

Blue Cheese and Walnut Agnolotti with Broccoli in a Cheese Sauce

  • fresh Agnolotti, one packet (Pasta Fresca)
  • broccoli
  • cheese sauce, flavoured with nutmeg and ground pepper

Make cheese sauce, steam broccoli, boil pasta. Mix all together when cooked and slop on a plate!

15 August 1995

Suprisingly enough we had chicken sandwiches for dinner! My favourite filling of chicken, cheese, Paul Newmans Own Ranch Dressing all in tomato and herb bread.

14 August 1995

Roast chicken with roast potatoes and peas. Dessert was Mama Mia Coffee Liquer Ice Cream.

Roast chicken

  • 1 chicken (preferably fresh, not frozen)
  • garlic
  • thyme (or other fresh herbs)
  • white wine
  • lemon

Stuff cavity with chunks of lemon and garlic and pour in some wine. Using a sharp knife, make slits between the ribs from inside the cavity - this helps the flavour and moisture get into the meat. Stuff in some herbs and inset herbs and slivers of garlic under the skin along with little blobs of butter. Microwave the chicken in a roasting dish for half the cooking time. Remove excess liquid, turn chicken, and finish off in the oven. Cover with foil for half the remaining cooking time if necessary. I haven't given any quantities or cooking times because it will depend on the size of the chicken.

Roast potatoes

  • Potatoes and other roasting veges such as pumpkin
  • 1-2 T olive oil
  • 1-2 T flavoured vinegar
  • 1-2 T lemon or orange juice
  • garlic, sliced or crushed or left as cloves
  • sprig of rosemary (or other fresh herbs)
  • lots of freshly ground pepper

Wash and chop potatoes. Mix with other ingredients in a roasting dish. Microwave until nearly cooked. Finish off in oven for 30-60 minutes. Check that there isn't too much liquid in dish near the end of cooking - if there is drain it so that the veges crisp up.

13 August 1995

Dinner at the in-laws.

12 August 1995

Went out for dinner to Tabaq - a Pakistani restaurant in Cuba St, Wellington. I had chicken Jalfrazi (sp) and Linton had a lamb dish (can't remember the name), with bread and rice. Pleasant enough food, however, the hot dishes were mild in comparison to Indian and Thai restaurants. We didn't raise even a drop of sweat. The prices, however, were very reasonable.

11 August 1995

Linton had left-over fish pie and I had toasted sandwiches. We're going to the supermarket this weekend so hopefully that will inspire me to make something interesting.

10 August 1995

Fish pie. Not very exciting - just Hoki cooked in lemon juice, orange juice, lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, a splash of Thai fish sauce, dill, and Italian parsley, then the more solid parts baked as a double crust (pastry) pie. Sounds better than it actually was!

9 August 1995

Tonight we had beef, carrots, and peas in a black-bean chilli sauce on noodles. It wasn't that wonderful so I won't bore you with the recipe.

8 August 1995

We were home late due to playing in the finals of our Ultimate league (and yes, Kaos won!!). Thus we ended up eating chocolate as well as sardines (in mustard sauce) and cheese sandwiches. Uurghh. Better luck tomorrow night.

7 August 1995

Cordon Bleu schnitzel a la Judi with boiled potatoes and peas.

Cordon Bleu Schnitzel

  • 2 large wiener schnitzel
  • 2 thin slices prosciutto
  • 2 slices edam cheese
  • 1 egg
  • flour
  • breadcrumbs
  • ground pepper
  • ghee

Put prosciutto and cheese on to one half of each schnitzel, leaving a 1 cm strip round the outside. Fold over other side of schnitzel and press edges together. Mix flour and pepper. Flour each side of schnitzel, dip in egg, then crumb. Fry each side in ghee till browned. Put cooked schnitzel on paper towels in a warm oven for 5-10 minutes to aborb excess oil.

6 August 1995

Yum.... Linton's making calzone. Can hardly wait.

Linton's Calzone


This is based on Alison Holsts Traditional Pizza Base...

  • 2 t dried yeast
  • 2 t sugar
  • 1/2 C cold milk
  • 1/2 C hot tap water
  • about 2.5 C strong or high-grade flour
  • 1/2 t salt

Dissolve sugar into water in a bowl. Mix with milk. Heat in microwave or leave to cool, as necessary, to make a lukewarm mixture. Sprinkle on the yeast, mix, and leave until frothy. Add 1 C flour and mix until smooth. Cover and leave in warm place (in a sink of warm water for instance) while assembling the filling.

When dough is well risen (45 minutes) stir in salt and enough flour to make a workable dough. Knead well. Form into two balls and leave for 10 minutes to relax gluten. Form into two rounds. Preheat oven to 200 degrees C.


  • cottage cheese
  • sliced edam or mozzarella
  • finely sliced chilli pepper
  • sliced prosciutto
  • pesto
  • diced pickled sweet peppers (capsicums)

Amounts are up to you! The cottage cheese makes a nice creamy sauce. We put the ingredients on in layers on half the dough and the cottage cheese on the other side. Fold the dough over and seal edges with a fork. Let rise in a warm place for 10 minutes. Bake at 200 degrrees C for about 10-15 minutes.

5 August 1995

Dinner at the in-laws. Roast beef, lyonnaise potatoes, and veges followed by a steamed pudding - pumpkin pie flavoured. Good traditional NZ tucker! (except maybe for the pud).

4 August 1995

Jen's going away party. David made his carrot&dill soup (he has promised me the recipe), I made 2 loaves of focaccia bread and Laurel's Loaf for Learning, and Craig made his Chocolate Rum Slice dessert (he has also promised me the recipe). I must admit that this was the nicest focaccia I have ever made - very light and fluffy with a great taste. I think the secret was in the kneading - don't skimp on it.

Focaccia Bread

  • 1.5 t salt
  • 625 g/4.5 C high grade or strong flour
  • 1 T dry yeast
  • 1.5 C lukewarm water
  • 1 t sugar
  • quarter to half C extra virgin olive oil (I use somewhere between the two measures)

Dissolve sugar in the water then sprinkle on the yeast. When yeast has started frothing whisk in 1.5 C of flour and the oil. Leave to rise until doubled in bulk (about 45 minutes, bubbles will have formed on the top). Sprinkle on the salt then add the rest of the flour. Form dough into a ball and knead on a floured bench for at least 10 minutes. The dough will be smooth and very elastic when ready. Add extras at this stage (see below). Form dough into a round and leave to relax for 10 minutes. Flatten into a roasting dish so that the dough is 2 cm thick. Cover with a damp cloth and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk (about 45 minutes). Slash or mark as desired, brush with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.

Bake in a preheated 220 degrees C oven for 15 minutes then reduce to 200 degrees C and cook a further 20-25 minutes until bread sounds hollow when tapped. After 15 minutes cooking, brush bread with water a couple of times. This should result in a thick crust.

  • chop up 5 cloves of garlic with the leaves from a couple of sprigs of fresh rosemary and add to final dough
  • add 1 t caraway seeds
  • press sliced olives onto top of dough just before putting in oven.
  • press in peppercorns - you may need to glaze this by brushing on egg beaten with 2 T water otherwise the peppercorns are inclined to bounce off!

3 August 1995

Was totally uninspired so we had Campbells leek&potato soup (with added fresh dill) with crumpets, crackers, and cheese.

2 August 1995

Tonight was pseudo-Tandoori chicken followed up by Claire Bear's apple pie and cream (yup - more cholesterol).

Pseudo-Tandoori Chicken

  • 0.5-1 kg chicken pieces
  • 100 ml natural yoghurt (unsweetened)
  • 2-4 T Pataks Tandoori Paste

Skin chicken and slash flesh was a sharp knife. Mix yoghurt and paste in roasting dish. Add chicken and cover with paste. Marinate 1-2 hours then roast for 40 minutes at 180 degrees C. Serve with rice.

Claire Bear's Apple Pie

Recipe coming soon - stay posted

1 August 1995

Had plates of cholesterol for dinner: bacon and eggs with left-over nacho sauce and peas. Yum-yum.

31 July 1995

Quick and Easy Nachos

  • 1 440 g can kidney beans
  • 1 400 g can tomatoes in tomato juice, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 fresh or dried chilli peppers (to taste)
  • 1 onion, sliced into strips
  • 1 t dried oregano or 1 T fresh
  • 2 t fresh or bottled coriander (not ground)
  • 1 T oil
  • 1 packet of tortilla chips
  • lots of grated cheese
  • dollops of sour cream

Saute onion, garlic, and chillies in the oil. Add beans then tomatoes. Stir. Mush lots of the beans as you stir to thicken the sauce. Boil gently until sauce is reduced. Serve with lots of chips and grated cheese.

30 July 1995

Spent the entire day baking bread. Tried the Loaf for Learning from Laurel's Kitchen Bread book. I thoroughly recommend the experience-you'll know how to bake bread by the end of it. I won't type the recipe in because its p-a-g-e-s long but here are the details of the book. I also made Pumpkin Bread which went down a treat - its shaped like a pumpkin too!

We combined dinner with the neighbours: David made his famous carrot and dill soup (will try and get the recipe off him) which we had with the pumpkin bread, and roast chicken with potatoes, yams, and pumpkin. Desert was from Craig - he biked all the way down to the supermarket to get the Rum and Chocolate Kapiti icecream.

Pumpkin Bread

Adapted from Cranks Bread & Teacakes: ISBN 0-85112-381-3

  • 350 g home-made pumpkin puree
  • 50 ml cooking liquid from pumpkin
  • 25 g butter
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1.5 t dried yeast
  • 1 t brown sugar
  • 450 g stoneground wholemeal flour
  • 1 t salt
  • egg glaze (1 egg mixed with 3 T milk)

Make pumpkin puree by steaming then mashing or processing pumpkin. Saute onion. Mix yeast with pumpkin liquid and sugar. Leave till yeast is dissolved and frothy. Combine flour and salt. Add yeast mixture, onion, and pumpkin puree to flour. Mix to a soft dough then knead for 10 minutes. Cut off a small piece of dough (for the stalk). Shape the dough into a round a place on oiled baking tray. Shape the stalk and press onto the center. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes. (For lighter bread do a second rising. Carefully deflate dough then reform into a ball by pushing the edges of the dough underneath - try not to break the top. Rise for 30-45 minutes). With a sharp knife make cuts all the way round the dough to resemble a pumpkin. Brush with egg glaze and bake at 220 degrees C for 35-40 minutes. Brush with glaze after the first 20 minutes. Cool on a wire tray for at least an hour.

29 July 1995

Linton made his best recipe tonight - Spare Ribs. These ribs smell absolutely divine when they are cooking - they take about an hour to cook so its absolute torture waiting for them. They taste absolutely divine too. This recipe is based on Annabel Langbein's Spicy Tomato Spare Ribs (from Smart Food for Busy People: Stylish Food for New Zealanders, 1993, ISBN: 0--473-02228-1).

Linton's Spicy Spare Ribs

  • 1-1.5 kg pork spare ribs
  • 2 T tomato paste
  • 2 T honey
  • 1 C orange juice
  • 1 t garlic, chopped fine
  • 1 t cumin seed, freshly ground
  • 1 t ginger, ground
  • 1 t oregano, dried
  • 1 t mustard powder
  • 2 chilli peppers, fresh or dried, finely chopped (to taste - the more the better!)

Separate ribs and put in large casserole dish or roasting pan (so they lie in a single layer). Combine the rest of the ingredients and pour over the ribs. Cover and bake for 35 minutes at 170 degrees C, remove cover and bake TURNING EVERY FIVE MINUTES for 30 minutes or until sauce is nice and thick. Serves 2 hungry, greedy people with a few left over for lunch the next day. Would serve 4-6 normal people as part of a meal :-)

Judi Lapsley Miller
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