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BBC broadcaster and serious foodie Kim Lenaghan shares her favourite things

By Kerry McKittrick

The 54-year-old is currently presenting The Foodie on BBC Radio Ulster. She lives in Belfast.

My best moment

I think now is pretty good. I’ve got to the stage where I’m very comfortable in my own skin. I’m very comfortable with who I am, where I live, what I do for a living, my friends and my relationship. I’ve been with Jim now for 10 years and he’s currently living in London so we both go back and forth. It’s quite nice because we were both in our forties when we got together and used to our own space. This way we have the best of both worlds.

My best song

This is hard to choose as I like all sorts of music. I get to play the kind of music I love on my Sunday morning radio show — Frank Sinatra, Edith Piaf and Ella Fitzgerald. I love Sinatra’s All The Way, Ella Fitzgerald’s Embraceable You and Edith Piaf’s La Vie En Rose.

My best advice

When I started to seriously cook a friend of mine from the States told me to never be afraid of writing  in a cookbook — it will never be exactly as it says and you might like a particular recipe a slightly different way. It means that when I open a recipe that I haven’t looked at in a couple of years my own chronicle is right there for me to see.

My best way to relax

A glass of wine in hand cooking up a lovely, unhurried evening meal with some lovely music in the background — I love to cook and take my time over it.

My best job

I worked for the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and also for the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, but I’ve been at the BBC for nearly 20 years now. It’s hard work but there’s never a time when I come into work sorry to do so. I’m glad to be here and glad to be on air. I’m particularly enjoying presenting foodie week because it’s a passion of mine. What’s not to love?

My best gift

Each year for Valentine’s Day Jim buys me a knife, one of those fabulous Japanese Global knives and now I have a full set of them. There can’t be many who get a knife for Valentine’s Day.

My best achievement

I cooked the best ever Christmas dinner last year. I cooked goose with two different kinds of stuffing and made my own stock from the giblets. I made prunes and Armagnac to accompany it and had the red cabbage and the roast potatoes all ready at the same time. Mind you I was so exhausted after that I hardly had the energy to eat it, but the sense of satisfaction was overwhelming.

My best buy

A KitchenAid mixer. It was a real splurge but I do use it and I’ve also bought lots of attachments to go with it. I use it to make sourdough bread, pasta, ice cream and I’ve even used the mincer attachment to make venison and boar sausages. 

My best film

This is hard — I love black and white movies so it could have been Casablanca or it could have been All About Eve, but it’s going to be It’s A Wonderful Life. I’m a Christmas baby — I was born on Christmas Eve. Each year I sit down and watch it on my birthday with a glass of something and start crying about five minutes into it. It’s the story about hope triumphing over everything and it’s the best Christmas story

My best book

Either The Great Gatsby or Jane Eyre. I love Jane Eyre and read it first when I was 11 or 12 and it was the first book that I stayed up all night to finish. I also loved the decadence of The Great Gatsby and would love to experience one of his flamboyant parties

  • BBC Radio Ulster’s The Foodie can be heard on Sunday at 12.30pm and at
  • The programme is part of BBC Northern Ireland’s Taste North food season across TV, radio and online which begins today.  For further information on the programme go to

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