Biddy’s passion for food began in the kitchens of some of Dublin’s leading restaurants where she worked whenever she was “resting” from acting, her first career. She became one of Ireland’s best known actresses, playing a leading role in The Riordans, the most popular drama series on Irish national televison and radio for 21 years. She played regularly in every theatre in Ireland as well as appearing in films and on British television and, gradually, changed career through writing for television and radio drama.
For the 30 years following, Biddy was a full time freelance journalist specialising in food, hospitality and tourism. She published 13 books, seven about Irish food culture, its history, recipes and ingredients, Irish artisan foods, and the development of a contemporary Irish food culture.
Biddy was a founder member of the Irish Food Writers’ Guild and was for many years been on the co-ordinating team for the Guild’s annual Food Awards. She was also regularly on the judging panel for a number of other awards for restaurants and hotels.
An active member of Slow Food, for which she held the position of Leader of Slow Food SugarLoaf for a time, she was part of the team that organise the hugely successful Wild and Slow Winter Fest – the first ever devoted entirely to wild food.
Her 13th book Wild Food, how to gather, preserve and cook from 0’Brien Press, came out in 2013, was well received, and went straight into the bestseller list.
Biddy was a judge on TV3’s Great Irish Bake Off. The first series was nominated for an IFTA award.
Books in print:
Best of Irish Series for the O’Brien Press:
- Best of Irish Traditional Cooking
- Best of Irish Meat
- Best of Irish Home Baking
- Best of Irish Potato Recipes
- Best of Irish Festive Recipes
Irish Heritage Cookbook (with Georgina Campbell), Lorenz Books.
Irish Cooking (available in English, French and German), Bonechi Italy/O’Brien Press Ireland.
Wild Food, How to gather, preserve and cook, O’Brien Press.
Biddy passed away on Friday 24th November 2017 and will be dearly missed. May she rest in peace. She is remembered by her fellow Guild members here.