“My nan used to call it all foreign muck"
Former Strictly Come Dancing judge Len Goodman sparked fury after admitting he had never tried curry before because his grandmother called it “foreign muck”.
Len appeared on the BBC’s coverage of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations alongside Masterchef judge John Torode.
They were sampling a lemon and amaretti trifle created by Jemma Melvin.
At one point, Jemma asked Len: “Everyone is serving up different dishes at their street parties, are you a cook, Len?”
He responded: “No, I’m hopeless, honestly. My wife did Coronation Chicken yesterday for our tea and I’ve never had it before.”
Len then admitted he has never had curry because of his grandmother.
“No, I’ve never had curry and curry powder and all that before. No.
“My nan used to call it all foreign muck so I’ve always been worried about it.”
John Torode laughed at the 78-year-old’s remarks while BBC presenter Kirsty Young remained silent.
Len Goodman then quickly admitted to enjoying Coronation Chicken.
“But I must admit it was delicious. It was so tasty.”
Shortly after his remarks, Len began receiving criticism.
Political commentator Adam Schwarz said:
“A dollop of old fashioned British Empire xenophobia from Len Goodman on the BBC’s Jubilee coverage: ‘Curry and curry power… my nan used to call it all foreign muck’.
“Yes, Goodman was quoting his nan, who was probably born during the 19th century.
“But if you’re sharing a racist quote, doing it while physically wincing at the target of the racism and telling it as a supposedly humorous anecdote is no way to do it.”
A dollop of old fashioned British Empire xenophobia from Len Goodman on the BBC's Jubilee coverage:
"Curry and curry power… my nan used to call it all foreign muck". pic.twitter.com/osDXEgIQJD
— Adam Schwarz (@AdamJSchwarz) June 5, 2022
Another person said: “Petition to get the BBC and Len Goodman to apologise for his choice of words calling Coronation Chicken ‘foreign muck’ in the words of his nan, apparently.
“Appalling and NO excuses because of his age.
“We forgive older generations for things like this too much.”
One user wrote: “Not Len Goodman lovingly quoting how his nan referred to curry as ‘foreign muck’ and that’s why he’s nervous of it now. This on the BBC Jubilee coverage.”
One person suggested that Len Goodman should work on his history, writing:
“Someone should tell Len Goodman that Coronation chicken is a British recipe, created for the coronation by two English chefs.
“It’s based on a dish created for George V in 1935 called Jubilee Chicken. Curry has been an accepted part of our national diet for over 200 years.
“Makes you wonder if Len Goodman has ever eaten pasta or anything bought at a patisserie.
“And no, he’s not just reporting what his Nan said, he’s telling us why he’s never tried something.
“At no point has he gone, “Wait, ‘foreign’ doesn’t mean something is ‘muck’…”
One comment read: “Len Goodman demonstrating another ‘British tradition ‘ casual racism and they all laughed!
“The arrogance and perceived superiority over other nations is truly sickening! He should apologise!”
Later in the show, Clare Balding issued an apology if “anyone took offence” to remarks made earlier in the show.
A BBC spokesperson told The Telegraph that her apology was “related to remarks made during the section of the show” in which Len Goodman appeared.