Oliver brushes off food feud with Ramsay

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British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver said on Tuesday he regretted saying rival cook Gordon Ramsay was jealous of his success and brushed off their simmering food feud as "no big deal".

Both are successful celebrity television chefs and have traded barbs before - with Ramsay recently chiding the younger Oliver for not attending the launch of the Hong Kong branch of his own restaurant chain, Jamie's Italian.

"If you're going to open a restaurant in Hong Kong, at least turn up," Ramsay told CNBC at the launch of the Hong Kong branch of his Bread Street Kitchen chain last year.

Oliver, in Australia as part of his "revolution" to champion food education in schools, hit back on Sunday.

"Gordon will do anything to try and take the p*** out of me because he is deeply jealous and can't quite work out why I do what I do and why he can't do that," he reportedly told the Daily Mail.

"He is too busy shouting and screaming and making our industry look like a bunch of shouters and screamers."

Asked about the comments on Monday, Oliver told reporters he wished he had not hit back in the food fight, reported Agence France-Presse.

"To be honest, I'm annoyed that I said anything because I did bite for a few years and it felt quite good, but I don't think it's very responsible of me to take the p*** again because I don't want his kids to get upset because I'm slagging off their dad," he said.

He was speaking at the launch of his Ministry of Food cookery school in Stockland at Wetherill Park, Sydney, said the Mail.

"He's just a ranter, he's paid to rant. He's paid to shower negativity and all his proteges don't talk to him because he's like that and it's a shame," he said.

But the former Naked Chef star did not rule out the possibility that the two high-personality cooks could one day be friends.

"I got on with him once but he decided to slag me off at every opportunity. It's kind of friendly banter, it's no big deal but you never know: we might be friends again sometime."

On Sunday, Oliver also gave his two cents' worth on Pete Evans, a judge on cooking game show My Kitchen Rules judge and an advocate of the paleo diet, whose controversial baby food book, Bubba Yum Yum: The Paleo Way, was pulled this month after health experts suggested the book's recipes could be potentially fatal to children.

"There's a lot of bulls*** around at the moment," Oliver told the Mail.

"I see world experts every two weeks for three hours on different specialisms... the reality is, these very specific diets are quite unsustainable.

"Everything in moderation and what you like. Can you have a burger every once and a while? Yeah. Can you have a beer? Yeah."

 
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