Lynn Martin

University of Adelaide
Adelaide, South Australia

Best wishes for many more birthdays and songs!

In September and October of 1998 Sidney Mintz was Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the University of Adelaide's Research Centre for the History of Food and Drink. The Research Centre had been established in 1997, and Sid was the first scholar of distinction to visit it, so of course Sid has a special place in its short history.

Towards the end of his stay my wife and I took Sid and Jackie on a trip outside Adelaide. We first went to the McLaren Vale wine region and visited several wineries, including Wirra Wirra, makers of one of my favorite wines. Our next stop was Willunga, where we purchased dukkah made by one of Australia's best chefs, Russel Jeavons. Then we drove to the coast at Middleton, spread a blanket on grassy hill, and watched the whales frolic out to sea. While whale watching we ate our lunch—Turkish bread, olive oil, dukkah, pâté, cheese, and a bottle of red wine.

Sid was far more interested in Maggie Beer's famous pheasant pâté than Russel Jeavons' dukkah. The recipe for the pâté is confidential, but I present here the recipe for the dukkah.

Dukkah (also spelled dukka) is an Egyptian spice blend of ground and roasted seeds. The precise ingredients vary, but a typical recipe includes a base of hazel nuts with cumin, coriander, sesame, salt, and pepper. Russel replaces the hazel nut base with almonds and uses wild fennel seeds instead of the cumin. The mixture can be used in a variety of dishes, but I recommend dipping bread in olive oil and then dipping it in the dukkah.