After you have enjoyed one of Dinah Campion’s breakfasts in the beautiful Ivyleigh House, you might find yourself asking your hostess just how she came to acquire such a capacious set of culinary skills, how she manages to blend professional precision with domestic goodness. We asked Mrs Campion the question, and she told us this: “I was reared on a farm so we had a lot of our own food grown, or reared, on the farm. My mother was a great cook, so I learned to cook from my mother and my sisters also, and I had a great interest in cookery books initially and then attended cookery classes. I was influenced by Delia Smith and Blaithnead Bergin (Darina Allen’s sister). What I like to do is simple cooking made easy, and offer a good variation of dishes for breakfast.”
So there you have the answer as to why the Ivyleigh House breakfast is one of the very best in the country. With an autodidact’s zeal, consolidated by instruction from the best teachers, Mrs Campion keeps on learning, even though good food is simply in her blood. Her hunger to learn keeps this destination address, close to the centre of Portlaoise, at the top of the pile.
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