Pardon, but… — just how tasty is rat?
If you had been a contestant recently on the British Reality TV show I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here, you would have had your chance to find out.
Contestant and celebrity chef Gino D’Acampo, who won the show, and soap opera actor Stuart Manning were members of a team “in exile,” subsisting on meager rations of rice and beans. A lack of meat prompted contestants to catch, kill, skin, and prepare “rat risotto.”
Unfortunately for this daring duo, also lurking onsite in the Australian bush were members of another team — the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA):
RSPCA NSW chief inspector David O’Shannessy said it was unacceptable for the rat to have been killed for a TV show. He said there was a “code of practice” dictating how animals could be used in theatrical productions and films. “The killing of a rat for a performance is not acceptable,” he told BBC Radio 5 Live.
The upshot in the back boonies of Down Under?
Stuart and Gino were charged with animal cruelty. They could face jail time. Further, the RSPCA suspects that the rat was tame…
The TV show’s producers issued a statement: “The production was unaware that killing a rat could be an offence in New South Wales and accepts that further inquiries should have been made — this was an oversight.”
As for the risotto, Gino said it was the best recipe he had ever prepared.
Add that one to the “road kill cookbook”!