Matt Butler: Don’t bolt your food, Usain – not in Jamie and Jimmy’s naff caff

View from the Sofa: Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast, Channel 4

If you didn’t know Usain Bolt was quite a good sport, you will have realised it if you had seen him being “interviewed” by Jamie Oliver on his new vehicle, Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast – possibly the most contrived, toe-curling, faux-familiar food show the lisping chef has ever done. Ever. Even worse than that one where he supposedly stood in his garden.

Harsh? Watch it yourself if you don’t believe us. The premise is that Jamie and Jimmy Docherty – Oliver’s “old mucker from back at school” – have a café at the end of Southend Pier where they make Batman-style sound effects (“Boom!” “Bam!”) as they laddishly throw together food creations, or use angle grinders to build über-man tandoori-cum-barbecue contraptions with which to cook more fancy, yet oh-so masculine food. Their hope, they said, was that we at home could “get busy with food” over the weekend. Just what we want to do on a sub-zero mid-winter’s morning: chop up a bin in the back yard.

Last Friday’s opening episode featured Bolt in the café – which, let’s not kid ourselves, is a studio with the audience acting as customers – and he sauntered in as if he might fancy a cuppa.

As he sat at the counter it was interview time. And the questions made Jonathan Ross seem like Jeremy Paxman: “Were you quite active as a kid?”; “You like cricket, don’t you?” Bolt could have beaten a hasty retreat at the sheer chumminess of it all, but he didn’t.

The fluffiness of the questions was perhaps to be expected: we weren’t tuning in to hear Bolt’s opinion of his Jamaica team-mates who had tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. The aim was to get Bolt talking about food – and one of the first things he revealed was his take on vegetarianism. He’s not a fan. “There are no vegetarian sprinters – I have seen people try; it doesn’t work,” he said.

On the subject of food he does like, there was no mention of the chicken nuggets which supposedly fuelled his record-breaking Beijing Olympic 100m run. Shame, given Oliver’s evangelical stance on processed meat. Instead Bolt revealed his love for his Aunt Lily’s jerk pork (no sniggering), which was a lucky coincidence because Oliver had just happened to be on the phone to the woman in question and got the exact recipe – complete with “raais an’ peas”, as he said in a terrible, borderline racially dubious, Jamaican accent – which they would try and replicate in the “caff”.

Once they got into the actual cooking, it wasn’t so bad. Bolt revealed himself to be a complete amateur in the kitchen – he didn’t even know what kneading was – and benefited from Oliver’s lessons in how to chop an onion. And, ever the showman, he tossed coriander leaves with a flourish and built up the anticipation to the tasting of the pork with the confidence of a TV veteran.

And when the pork was actually on the plate, he did what we suspect any athlete would do: he tucked in, wolfing down great mouthfuls of the stuff. No matter he was supposed to be helping dish the pork up to the customers, all he cared about was stuffing his face. And he did so, with a warm smile on his face – thankfully rendering Jamie to the sidelines.

Sport
The Pipes and Drums of The Scottish Regiments perform during the Opening Ceremony for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park on July 23, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Commonwealth gamesThe actor encouraged the one billion viewers of the event to donate to the children's charity
Sport
Members of the Scotland deleagtion walk past during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park in Glasgow on July 23, 2014.
Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
News
Very tasty: Vladimir Putin dining alone, perhaps sensibly
news
Life and Style
Listen here: Apple EarPods offer an alternative
techAre custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?
Arts and Entertainment
Top guns: Cole advised the makers of Second World War film Fury, starring Brad Pitt
filmLt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a uniform
News
The University of California study monitored the reaction of 36 dogs
sciencePets' range of emotions revealed
News
Snoop Dogg pictured at The Hollywood Reporter Nominees' Night in February, 2013
people... says Snoop Dogg
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from Shakespeare in Love at the Noel Coward Theatre
theatreReview: Shakespeare in Love has moments of sheer stage poetry mixed with effervescent fun
News
Joining forces: young British men feature in an Isis video in which they urge Islamists in the West to join them in Iraq and Syria
newsWill the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?
Arts and Entertainment
The nomination of 'The Wake' by Paul Kingsnorth has caused a stir
books
News
i100
Life and Style
food + drinkZebra meat is exotic and lean - but does it taste good?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

BI Manager - £50,000

£49000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client is...

BI Project Manager - £48,000 - £54,000 - Midlands

£48000 - £54000 per annum + Benefits package: Progressive Recruitment: My clie...

VB.Net Developer

£35000 - £45000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: If you're pa...

SAP Business Consultant (SD, MM and FICO), £55,000, Wakefield

£45000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP Business...

Day In a Page

Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Farewell, my lovely

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

Commonwealth Games 2014

Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games
Jack Pitt-Brooke: Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism
How Terry Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

How Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

Over a hundred rugby league players have contacted clinic to deal with mental challenges of game