Accidental chef has always had passion for cooking

Photo by Lucy Ibbotson.
Photo by Lucy Ibbotson.
Sue Hart Chef co-owner of Capriccio Restaurant, Wanaka.


Why and how did you become a chef?

I always loved to cook but probably by accident an opportunity came along and I thought ''I could do that''.


Biggest professional challenge?

Opening and running my own restaurant. Every day is a new challenge.


Favorite ingredient?

Herbs of all kinds, [they] add so much flavour.


Best cooking tip?

Tasting your product is so important.


What type of food do you like to eat?

There's not much I don't like, but Italian food is very special.


Who cooks at home?

I cook at home, but occasionally [husband] Dick surprises me with a meal which is lovely.


Favorite meal?



Favorite kitchen gadget?

Benriner Turner [slicer] makes lovely curly garnishes.


How have people's tastes changed/latest food trends?

I think because of the economy people are now looking for good quality, well cooked food and good value for money and bigger portions.


Battle of TV cooks:

Gordon Ramsay or Jamie Oliver? If I had to choose, probably Jamie Oliver. I think his food is more real.


Mississippi mud cake

This recipe is great, very moist and gluten free. We have had it on our menu often and it will return next winter.


6 eggs, separated
250g dark chocolate
250g butter
2 cups ground almonds
1 cup sugar


Beat egg yolks and sugar together. Melt chocolate and butter and pour into egg and sugar mix, beating all the time.

Add ground almonds and lastly, fold in beaten egg whites.

Pour into greased and paper-lined cake tin and bake for 1 hour at 160degC.

Serve with chocolate sauce and ice cream. Yum!


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