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Thursday, 24 February, 2000, 08:29 GMT
French batter Mars bars menu

Deep fried Mars Bar
Deep fried Mars Bars originated in Scotland

A Scottish chef has sparked a national debate in France after outraging food purists by putting deep-fried chocolate bars on the menu.

Ross Kendall introduced the "delicacy" after joining the Parisian restaurant Le Chipper when it opened last year.

That sort of thing will never work in France
Rival chef Marie-Ange Renaud
His menu also features chocolate-filled ravioli and chicken in Seven-Up but it was the popularity of the deep-fried Mars Bar with a dash of cinnamon that got French food critics in a stew.

The menu became the subject of a national debate after a prominent critic championed the fare, according to The Times.

Newspaper inundated

Vincent Noce, of the left-wing daily Liberation declared that the 1.40 battered bars were "not bad at all".

The newspaper said it had been inundated by readers angry at what they saw as an insult to Gallic gastronomy.

Marie-Ange Renaud, from Le Petit Bonheur, a traditional restaurant next to Le Chipper, said: "I tried one of their deep-fried Mars Bars and found it disgusting.

Nairn and Deacon Nick Nairn and Susan Deacon promote healthy eating
"That sort of thing will never work in France."

The deep-fried Mars Bar is thought to have originated in Stonehaven, in the north-east of Scotland.

Its existence may help account for the fact that parts of Scotland have the highest incidence of heart disease, cancer and strokes, the worst teeth and the lowest life expectancy in the developed world.

Attempts continue to try to rid Scotland of its unhealthy image.

Celebrity campaign

The Health Education Board for Scotland (Hebs) has launched a TV advertising campaign to encourage people to take a small step towards a healthier life.

The four adverts feature celebrities demonstrating how easy it is to switch to a healthier way of living without losing out on the good things in life.

Celebrity chef Nick Nairn, who appears in one of the adverts, was joined at the launch by Health Minister Susan Deacon.

Hebs spokesman Martin Raymond said: "You can't change people's behaviour by TV ads alone, but you can help to push healthy choices into people's daily lives.

"Our new commercials are a mix of the serious and humorous. In our research people told us that they wanted advice that didn't involve parading around in tight shorts or forcing down your greens."

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See also:
23 Feb 00 |  Scotland
A campaign worth its salt
22 Feb 00 |  Scotland
14m for Scottish NHS
22 Feb 00 |  Scotland
Defusing Scotland's 'timebomb'
02 Dec 99 |  Scotland
Glasgow: Bad for your health?
02 Dec 99 |  Health
North-south health divide 'widening'

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