Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver is facing backlash after having recently admitted that he makes his children eat chiles as form of punishment, reports The Daily Mail.
“I give them chiles for punishment, Oliver said. “It is not very popular beating kids any more, it’s not very fashionable and you are not allowed to do it and if you are a celebrity chef like me it does not look very good in the paper. So you need a few options.”
Once, Oliver says, he tricked his daughter into eating a Scotch Bonnet, which has a heat rating of 100,000 to 350,000 Scoville Units (most jalapeño peppers register between 2,500 and 8,000 on the Scoville scale), as a form of discipline.
“Poppy was quite disrespectful and rude to me and she pushed her luck. In my day I would have got a bit of a telling-off but you are not allowed to do that.
“Five minutes later she thought I had forgotten and I hadn’t. She asked for an apple. I cut it up into several pieces and rubbed it with Scotch Bonnet and it worked a treat. She ran up to mum and said, ‘This is peppery.’ I was in the corner laughing. [Oliver’s wife] Jools said to me, ‘Don’t you ever do that again.’”
Since the news broke out, Oliver’s methods have been denounced as a form of child abuse by many outlets, and one children’s commissioner called the celebrity chef a “d***head” whose role as an influencer and role model makes his behavior even more troubling.
“He purports to be a teacher and a role model and works with children. If he worked in a school in Victoria they'd sack him,” said commissioner Bernie Greary. “If you were cruel to children in that way here in Victoria in a school you'd get sacked. It's a way of assaulting children. It's child abuse.”
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Karen Lo is an associate editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @appleplexy.