Paula Deen vs. Anthony Bourdain: Chef wars

Food fight, food fight!

Oh, snap! It is on, food fans. A war of words is heating up between two of television’s most popular chefs: The rough and tumble, say-it-like-it-is Anthony Bourdain, and down-home Southern belle Paula Deen.

Deen, best known for her hearty calorie-laden comfort food, went public yesterday with her Type 2 diabetes diagnosis. The Georgia native said she’s been living with the disease for three years, all while shilling her less-than-heart-healthy cuisine. She also announced her new campaign “Diabetes in a New Light,” for which she has partnered with pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk.

If Deen was hoping she’d find sympathy from the food world after her announcement, she did not count on Anthony Bourdain.

The “No Reservations” host took to Twitter to voice his frustration over Deen’s self-promotion.

“Thinking of getting into the leg-breaking business, so I can profitably sell crutches later,” Bourdain tweeted.

It was no doubt a slam for Deen’s upcoming appearance in a commercial for Victoza, the diabetes drug that she has been using.

Bourdain has long been critical of Deen, once calling her the “worst, most dangerous person in America” because of her hearty cooking style. (This is, of course, coming from a guy who has visited Skyline Chili in Ohio and dined on deep-fried foie gras in Montreal — but we already knew chefs were particular about pots and kettles.)

Deen, always a lady, defended her three year silence about the diagnosis to USA Today.

“I felt like I had nothing to offer anybody other than the announcement.
I wasn’t armed with enough knowledge. I knew when it was time, it would
be in God’s time,” she said.

But Bourdain dissed Deen again to Eater, saying, “When your signature dish is hamburger in between a doughnut, and you’ve been cheerfully selling this stuff knowing all along that you’ve got Type 2 Diabetes. … It’s in bad taste if nothing else.”

Is it in bad taste, Bourdain? Or is it in delicious taste?


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