Claudia Roden | Litfest A Food and Drinks Literacy Festival at Ballymaloe
Claudia Roden was born in Cairo. She came to London to study art and stayed on when her family had to leave Egypt after the Suez crisis in 1956. Starting as a painter, she was drawn to the subject of food partly through a desire to evoke a lost heritage. She continued to write about food with a special interest in the social, cultural and historical background of cooking. She has written about the food of the Middle East, North Africa, the Mediterranean, Italy and most recently, of Spain.
Roden has worked as a “gastronomic foreign correspondent” for several newspapers and presented the BBC TV series Claudia Roden’s Mediterranean Cookery. She has run cookery courses and worked to change the food in hospitals. Her recipes are used by chefs and restaurateurs and by catering schools all over the world.
The publication of A Book of Middle Eastern Food in 1968 is said to have revolutionised Western attitudes to the cuisines of the Middle East and North Africa. Its influence was recognised in 1992 when she received the Glenfiddich Trophy “In celebration of a unique contribution to the food that we eat in Britain today”. In the US, in 2010, the book was inducted in the James Beard Hall of fame for the influence it has had on food in America.
Roden has won many awards. The Book of Jewish Food won 8 international awards including the prestigious Prince Claus Award for Culture and Development in The Netherlands in recognition of “exceptional achievements in the field of cultural heritage”. In 2012 the Guild of Food Writers awarded her a Lifetime Achievement Award and she received the Johannes van Dam Award for Gastronomy in the Netherlands. Achievement Award for her contribution to Culinary Culture at the Jerusalem Jewish Film Festival 2014. She is an Honorary Fellow at UCL (University College London) and SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies)
Years at Litfest: 2013, 2017
Type: regular


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Litfest - A Food and Drinks Literacy Festival at Ballymaloe is a weekend filled with fascinating facts, inspirational stories, intriguing discussions, incredible knowledge, fantastic music, fabulous dancing and of course, delicious food and drinks.
It is the only festival of its kind in Ireland and has created an important hub for food and drinks enthusiasts worldwide to meet and share ideas with each other.

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