Darina Allen is Ireland's best-known food ambassador and the bestselling author of Irish Traditional Cooking, Ballymaloe Cookery Course, A Year at Ballymaloe and Forgotten Skills of Cooking, which won the prestigious André Simon Award in 2010 as well as the Listowel Food Fair Book of the Year Award. Her most recent book is 30 Years at Ballymaloe, which won the Avonmore Cookbook of the Year at the Irish Book Awards in 2013. She wrote for The Irish Times from 1990 to 1994 and has written a weekly food column for the Irish Examiner since 1998.
Darina has presented nine series of her cookery programme, Simply Delicious, on television around the world. She runs the Ballymaloe Cookery School in Shanagarry, County Cork, which is situated in the middle of an 100-acre organic farm. In 2012 the Ballymaloe Cookery School was awarded the Good Food Ireland Cookery School of the Year.
Darina is a tireless campaigner for local produce, setting up Ireland's first farmers' market. She has won many awards including Veuve Clicquot Business Woman of the Year 2001, the IACP's Cookery Teacher of the Year 2005 and outstanding contribution to the Irish culinary sector by Euro-Toques in 2007. In 2013 she was awarded the Guild of Food Writers Lifetime Achievement Award 'for her incalculable contribution to culinary education'