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Home Cook: Wayne Matters, banker

Eat | Drink | Explore

When it comes to the ritual of cooking calzone, Wayne Matters needs an empty kitchen and total silence, but he says the finished dish is one he enjoys with family and friends and a glass of red wine.

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Wayne Matters is deputy CEO at Beyond Bank, one of the largest customer-owned banks in Australia.

When he’s not managing the 500 staff at the Adelaide-based national headquarters, he can be found leaning on the picket fence at Norwood Oval cheering on the Redlegs, his favourite football team. Or, if he’s allowed in the kitchen at home, he likes to cook calzone, an Italian oven-baked folded pizza stuffed with ingredients such as pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, mushrooms and olives.

“Finding the balance between work and home is not easy, but often it’s the simple things that are most effective in giving you down time,” he says.

“For me, it’s going to the football, rain, hail or shine, and cheering on the Redlegs. I live at Glenelg and have to travel across town to support the old rival, but once you’ve got a footy allegiance, it’s pretty hard to break.”

Matters says his perfect weekend is a Norwood win, then a Calzone Rustico to celebrate.

Sometimes my home is just as busy as my office, with two teenage daughters, their friends and all the hum of a general household,” he says. “It’s a happy sort of chaos, but when I’m cooking calzone I need total silence and sole use of the kitchen to concentrate on the job.”

Here, Matters gives more insight into how he works in the kitchen and supplies a hand-written recipe for the calzone he makes at home – a recipe he says was all in his head and the result of many years’ experience eating calzone.

In the kitchen I am …
Painful! I am meticulous with my preparation and get grumpy with distractions and others in my space, which is probably why I’m not allowed to cook very often.

The fridge is nearly empty – what do you cook for dinner?
Option 1 – get takeaway.
Option 2 – scrambled eggs, if there are eggs, or if not, baked beans on toast.

Most useful cooking tool?
Other than a glass of red wine, I’d say the barbecue. This is where I’d do most of my cooking and my wife is happier because it gets me out of the kitchen.

Three essential grocery items?
1. Bacon – you really can’t go wrong with it.
2. Steak – to prepare the palate for the red wine.
3. Asparagus – for me, the king of vegetables.

How did you learn to cook?
With some trial and lots of error. I’m a very unsophisticated cook and it’s the error rate that sees me banished to the barbecue.

Favourite restaurant?
La Trattoria on King William Street. It’s a brilliant and fun place for a family meal. Plus, it makes the best calzone in Adelaide.

Favourite recipe?
Calzone. It’s relatively quick to make and delicious, but never as good as those you get at La Tratt.

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Calzone Rustico with green tossed salad with fried halloumi. Photo: Tony Lewis

Calzone Rustico with Green Tossed Salad with Fried Halloumi

Calzone

Ingredients
1kg pizza dough
1 egg, lightly beaten
Pizza sauce (tomato puree)
250g sliced pepperoni
Shredded mozzarella cheese
100g diced bacon pieces
100g pitted black olives
1 red capsicum, thinly sliced
200g sliced mushrooms
1 red onion, diced
Grated parmesan cheese

Method
Pre-heat oven to 180-200C.
Roll dough to a 30cm disc. Coat with pizza sauce. Add toppings.
Fold over (like a pasty) and crimp edges. Baste with beaten egg. Bake in oven until brown.

Sauce

Ingredients
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1 onion, diced
500g minced beef
2 teaspoons mixed herbs
Dash of Worcestershire Sauce
820g can condensed tomato soup
410g can diced tomatoes with basil and garlic

Method
Saute garlic and onion. Add and brown mince. Add herbs and Worcestershire Sauce. Add diced tomatoes and tomato soup. Simmer for approximately 40 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

To serve, pour sauce over cooked calzone and top with grated parmesan.

Green Tossed Salad with Fried Halloumi

Ingredients
200g halloumi cheese
150g vine-ripened cherry tomatoes
120g mixed lettuce
1 sliced avocado
Dressing of choice

Method
Slice halloumi into rectangular prisms (50mm x 20mm x 10mm). Mix remaining salad ingredients in large salad bowl.
Add a little olive oil to frypan and fry halloumi until golden.
Add to mixed salad and drizzle with salad dressing just before serving.

Enjoy with friends and family and a glass of red wine.

Makes 4, Serves 6+

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Wayne Matters’ handwritten recipe. Photo: Tony Lewis

 

 

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