The Cookbook Workshop

A two day food writing workshop in Ballydehob, West Cork.

By Carina McNally

Do you dream of writing your own cookbook but need guidance, or simply a boost to get going? Do you have a vague idea for a cookbook but you need encouragement and outside enthusiasm, for it to blossom into life? If so, this workshop could be for you. Internationally renowned Irish food writer, television personality and cookbook author, Trish Deseine, is to host The Cookbook Workshop, a two day food writing course in the heart of West Cork from the 11th -12th May 2019.

Moving to Paris from Northern Ireland in 1987, Trish Deseine has recently relocated to West Cork after twenty-five years in France. Her website describes her as ‘Auteure culinaire, cook and writer’.  Recently awarded the prestigious Prix des Savoureuses in France, Trish Deseine’s C’est de la Trish (La Martinière €24.99) gives easy tips on to how to bring flavour into dishes while minimising waste. Her first book, the 2001 Petits plats entre amis won the Ladurée and SEB prizes. Her second, Je veux du chocolat! (2002) won a World Gourmand Cookbook. Writing for Marabout, Deseine’s Ma petite robe noire et autres recettes (2006) won the 2007 Prix la Mazille at Périgueux, making Deseine the first non-French writer to receive the prize.

For two days in May she invites lucky participants to join her ‘a in a hidden treetop loft overlooking the beautiful West Cork countryside’ where she curates a two-day cookbook writing workshop.  She promises she can help budding authors find a unique signature, organise and write recipes and more especially, the stories around them. She has chosen the venue Glensallagh Gardens, Ballydehob because of large, open, light-filled spaces, and its kitchen which overlooks beautiful organic gardens where she believes cookery ideas can flourish.

She is to be joined by Cork food writer and journalist Roz Crowley, whose company ‘Onstream Publications’ has been the force behind many of Ireland’s best selling cookbooks including the much acclaimed ‘Kinsale Good Food Circle Cookbook – Recipes from Ireland’s Gourmet Capitaland ‘A Kingdom of Wine – A celebration of Ireland’s Wine Geese’ awarded first prize in the wine category at the World Gourmand Cookbook Awards 2007.  A more recent Onstream publication, My Goodness – easy, wholesome food by Liz Nolan has been acclaimed by health guru Patrick Holford and recently won the Award for Best Vegetarian Ireland.

Both accomplished food writers who have perfected their craft, this workshop is guaranteed to offer an authentic experience where participants can share not only Roz and Trish’s love of food, but their depth of knowledge and personal experiences around cookbook publishing.

Part of the weekend’s Cookbook project includes a Saturday night dinner at the Michelin star Restaurant Chestnut, Ballydehob, which Trish describes as ‘an exceptional experience.’ This restaurant has been a major boost to the village of Ballydehob in what has become a new trend in the Irish tourism industry, ‘Food Tourism.’

Whether it’s individual collecting family recipes or someone with a novel idea trying to secure a book deal, this workshop promises to have a wide appeal; the aim is that you leave with a clear vision of your future book and an insight into its potential path to publication. It envisages an immersive, supportive, group dynamic, offering an individual mentoring session after the course, if desired. 

Trish states that the Tractor Shed Loft venue at Glensallagh Gardens, Ballydehob, West Cork, promises a beautiful, peaceful and meditative setting in which to start work on your future cookbook!  The workshop takes place from 10 am – 5pm Saturday, 10am – 4pm Sunday. There are currently no free places on the workshop but in case of unforeseen cancellations or any other information you can contact hello@trishdeseineireland.com; alternatively, you can follow Trish Deseine on Twitter of Instagram for news of any upcoming publishing workshops.


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