JACK MONROE initially hit the national headlines with her budget recipes she devised last year when poverty left her no choice but to feed herself and her young son on just £10 a week.

She has since written for the Echo, national newspapers, been part of TV debates, appeared in a Labour Party political broadcast and written a budget cookery book.

Echo: Echo's Jack Monroe calling for change at G8 summit

Jack Monroe

Jack started out as an antipoverty activist in Southend who regularly attended council meetings.

Here she discusses being caught up in the chaos of a media storm and how she still finds solace in the kitchen.

I WANT to make the world a better place. I realise that this sounds like the start of a beauty pageant speech but I also think it is a positive goal to have.

Whenever I write about anything political I always get comments from people saying ‘get back in the kitchen’ because people knowme as a food writer. But I started out as a political campaigner and I am not going to stop.

Having notoriety in the press has meant that I have a lot of people who follow me on Twitter and read my blog.

We live in a digital age now where we can respond to things immediately, instead of having to wait a week for a “right of reply” piece to be published in a newspaper.

For this reason I was able to write my response to an article written about me recently by columist Richard Littlejohn in the Daily Mail.

A piece had run the day before saying that I wasn’t an “ordinary” person and so I shouldn’t have been chosen to feature in a Labour Party broadcast. This meant I was then on high alert for anything else that might be written about me.

I wanted to write something in response because the article was an attack, not just on me, but on my son and my son’s father.

I read the article at ten to eight in the morning and ten minutes later I had posted my reply to the article.

There were 600 comments on the Richard Littlejohn article and 2,200 on the Guardian comment piece in reply to it.

The comments on Twitter were 99 per cent positive but there were still people taking pot-shots.

Partly I was running on adrenalin throughout the day, but in the evening I was exhausted and I was worried about any other stories being written.

I did wonder whether the story had been a war ning to me, but I am a L a b o u r m e m b e r and voter and that is where my heart is. I am not going to stop.

I have never been afraid to stand up to bullies. I have had an anonymous call at home from someone from a far right party threatening to slit my throat, and it did not stop me.

I had a bit of a tough time at school.

But I have always known my own mind and I am quite stubborn and confident about what I believe in.

My parents, David and Evelyn Hadjicofas, have always been quite politically minded. My dad always has proper socialist ideals and growing up I remember he was always reading philosophy books in his spare time and as a kid I would pick them up and read them.

He was also CEO of fostering charity Fostering Network, and was a union rep. I think that his views have definitely rubbed off on me.

I would not rule out going into politics but it is not really accessible to a lot of women at the moment.

When I went to the Tory Party and Labour Party conferences they were both filled with white men in suits.

I was asked how they would be able to get women like me into politics. I said they can’t.

I don’t have the money to fund a big political campaign, the nasty streak to shake someone else out of their political seat or the childcare on tap to look after my son while I am at the late night meetings.

At the moment I am focused on stopping any child from going to bed hungry in the UK. I will do that in the best way I can, which is now as an activist and campaigner, but if in the future that is through a career in politics I wouldn’t rule it out.

I find solace in the kitchen as I have to take time to do things, like slowly stir a risotto.

And if I am angry I can think of Richard Littlejohn while I mash and bash the mash potatoes!”

RACHEL RILEY was plucked from obscurity to take over from Carol Vorderman on Countdown in 2009.

Echo: Maths quiz – Rachel Riley works out her sums

Rachel Riley

Despite having no previous presenting experience, the Oxford University maths graduate filled Carol’s shoes.

She did receive criticism for her choice of skimpy outfits and her abilities as a presenter.

In a Daily Mail interview at the time, Rachel, right, spoke about dealing with criticism being aimed at her: “You learn to stop looking, because you can read ten nice things about yourself, but it's the one horrible thing that stays in your mind.

It’s hard, because you don’t normally hear criticism about yourself.

If friends bitch about you, they do it behind your back. They don’t do it to your face, or on YouTube.

“It’s funny, the sad things people come up and say, such as, ‘I saw you on telly the other day and you’re c**p.

You missed that number.’ “I don’t need other people to criticise me, because I’m the most critical person of myself.

I do beat myself up if I don’t get all the answers.”

RUBY TANDOH filmed BBC Two show the Great British Bake Off in July but it wasn’t until the show aired in August that she suddenly became famous.

Echo: Ruby Tandoh

Ruby Tandoh

She took on ten weeks of intensive baking while juggling her philosophy degree at university.

The repercussions of being on the showwere not something that Ruby had bargained on.

Commenting in the Guardian about the show, Ruby said: “It is your nan’s biscuit tin, a village fete and picnic in the park. It converts banality – the efforts of a gaggle of amateur bakers in a tent in Somerset – into a national spectacle.

“That’s why I am surprised at just howmuch nastiness was generated from the show.

“Despite the saccharin sweetness of the Bake Off, an extraordinary amount of bitterness and bile has spewed forth every week from angry commentators, both on social media and in the press.”

She spoke out about the online abuse and the accusations levelled at her: “I have defended myself against accusations of being a “filthy slag” based solely on me being a woman on a TV screen.

“If a show as gentle as Bake Off can stir up such a sludge of lazy misogyny in the murky waters of the internet, I hate to imagine the full scale of the problem. It’s not something I’m willing to tolerate.

Sod the haters. I’m going to have my cupcake and eat it, too.”