Jamie Oliver appeared at the BFI Southbank on Friday to celebrate twenty years since his TV debut by taking part in a live cooking demonstration and also to talk about his life and career. The 43-year-old took the time to teach the audience the cooking techniques he swears by and share the recipe of some of his signature dishes, including pasta and roasted fish. The onlookers were encouraged to ask the father-of-five some questions about cooking, his career and his personal life. When Jamie was asked about the biggest failure of his career, the chef laughed before explaining a hilarious story where he ended up feeding the top of his fingertip to presenters live on air!
Jamie Oliver had his television debut in 1999
The restaurateur explained: "Live TV is one of the most horrible things in the world – it is not the presenters, not the audience. It's the act of being live with only five minutes. When you are cooking something, you really have to prepare for everything." Jamie went on to explain that he had made sure to do just that when appearing on a live Japanese morning show, sourcing all the ingredients locally himself and planning an incredible mushroom dish that was "very visual."
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However, he had not prepared for the difference in utensils. Jamie revealed: "Some amazing Japanese man had gifted me this £300 knife, and a Japanese knife is often flat on one side and angled on the other, a European knife is angled. So, the tap-chopping method is good with European style knives but not so good with Japanese style knives - I lobbed off a lump of my finger, I cut myself, the only time I think I have ever done it was live on TV in Japan on their biggest morning show."
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Jamie made the decision to "quickly wrap my finger in a tea towel as if nothing had happened, but the funniest part is a bit of my finger went in the dish!" In that moment, the chef had to decide if he should stop production or carry on, choosing to do the latter: "I served it to these lovely Japanese people, they finished it all up, every last bit!"
Jamie Oliver has five children
The comical moment did not end there, as Jamie explained once his piece was over, they went to a commercial break. Jamie took this opportunity to "scream louder than you could ever believe!" but he did not realise that "in Japan they don’t throw to a video, they throw to a lady over in the corner who is 5 metres away. So, as she was doing her live advert, which the advertiser had obviously paid a lot of money for, in the background there was me screaming." It seems the much- loved television star can now find the funny side of the shocking mistake. "I was there screaming, having fed myself to these lovely presenters. Anyway, at least my finger grew back alright!" he joked.
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