Delia Smith CBE

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Delia Smith is a celebrity chef and TV presenter. She teaches basic cookery skills in a no-nonsense style.

At 21, she worked in a small restaurant in Paddington, initially washing dishes before moving on to waitressing. She eventually helped with the cooking. She started reading English cookery books at the British Museum.

Her next job was at Carlton Studios in London, where she prepared food for photography.

TV Presenter

Smith’s first television appearances came in the early 1970s, as resident cook on BBC East’s regional magazine programme Look East.

In the 1970s and early 1980s she was an occasional guest on the BBC’s Saturday morning children’s programme Multicoloured Swap Shop, giving basic cooking demonstrations.

Smith announced her retirement from television in 2003. However, she then returned for an eponymous six-part series airing on the BBC in Spring 2008.

Food Writer

In 1969 Smith was taken on as the cookery writer for the Daily Mirror’s newly launched magazine. Her first piece featured kipper pâté, beef in beer and cheesecake. She also baked the cake on the cover of The Rolling Stones’ album Let It Bleed.

Her 1995 book Delia Smith’s The Winter Collection sold 2 million copies in hardback, becoming the fifth biggest-selling book of the 1990s.

In 1972 Smith started a column in the Evening Standard. She later defected to the rival Evening News, but she returned to the Standard when that newspaper bought out the News. She wrote for both for 12 years; later she wrote a column for the Radio Times until 1986.

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