Strictly Come Dancing 2015 contestants: Ainsley Harriott confirmed to Salsa on BBC1 show

'In my day job the only type of Salsa I know about is the one in my recipes'

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Ainsley Harriott is to trade his chef's hat for a pair of dancing shoes this autumn.

The celebrity chef will join Jeremy Vine on Strictly Come Dancing as the second confirmed contestant.

News of Harriott, 58, joining the series was announced on The One Show.

The chef, who loves to glide around the kitchen as he cooks, said: “I must admit that I do love to dance, but doing it in front of the nation is a whole different matter.

"In my day job the only type of Salsa I know about is the one in my recipes so I am looking forward to rising to the challenge, bring it on!”


Harriott presented hit BBC One cookery show, Ready Steady Cook for 16 years from 1994 until 2010 and said Vine would be a worthy competitor.

“Jeremy has got this wonderful discipline about him. Everything he does is structured and he plans it.”

Read more: Petition launched to put Ainsley Harriott on £20 note

“When it comes to dancing it is about the discipline and how much effort you put in. If you put the time in then you can be a bit more expressive,” added Harriott.

Harriott, who revealed he hadn't been told who his partner would be yet, has been priced as the outsider at 66-1 by bookies.

Vine had his odds slashed to 25-1 after the announcement of Harriott's involvement.

The 13th series of Strictly Come Dancing will begin in September.

With additional reporting from the Press Association.