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Bake Off’s Prue Leith 'put 28 people in hospital' after dodgy chicken blunder

Dame Prue Leith has revealed she gave 30 people food poisoning after serving up a dodgy chicken, with 28 ending up in hospital.

The Great British Bake Off judge, 82, recalled the debacle from the early days of her catering career when her company, Leith's Good Food, was hired to cater an event. Speaking in Bath as part of her Nothing in Moderation tour, Prue admitted one of the guests almost ended up in the morgue after her chicken mayonnaise mishap.

Prue said: “You can't be in catering for 30 years without something going disastrously wrong.”

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Recalling the event, Prue explained her company was tasked with cooking up a chicken mayonnaise dish for 25 people, but disaster struck when an extra five guests arrived. She said: “The cooks poached another chicken while the flesh was still warm, which is a crime, and they mixed with the chicken that was already there.”

The South African chef added the event took place on an extremely hot day in a venue with no refrigeration, meaning the food was left out longer than it should have been. “This chicken sat there and lunch was very late and we managed to poison everybody,” she added.

Prue admitted she was left traumatized by the near-fatal event, which was made worse by the status of some of the people involved. She said: “It haunts me as everybody was ill.

“All 30 people but two of them ended up in hospital and one of them was in critical care as he was very old and was a High Court judge. He could have ended up in the morgue and not in hospital.

“That was a wake-up call.”

Dame Prue is currently making waves stateside, after filming a new series of The Great American Baking Show alongside fellow judge Paul Hollywood. She also plans to release a book, Bliss on Toast, and an updated version of her biography.

The Great British Bake Off returned to screens last week for its 13th season, with fans left in shock at series host Matt Lucas’ dramatic weight loss.

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