Salad dressing recipe at the centre of Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis's split

Actress and director shared a snippet from a book seemingly making light of recent tabloid claims about their separation

Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis at the Critics Choice Awards in 2020. Reuters
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Olivia Wilde's separation from Jason Sudeikis has been the topic of much tabloid speculation.

This week, it amped up when the couple's former nanny spoke to the Daily Mail about their split and claimed she was fired without severance.

The nanny, who cared for the couple's children, Otto, 8, and Daisy, 6, made a series of claims. However, the detail that seems to have attracted the most attention is the fact Wilde left Sudeikis and took “her special dressing” with her to prepare salads for her reported new partner Harry Styles.

The salad and its dressing appear to have been a point of contention in the couple's split.

The nanny told the Daily Mail: "Jason told me: 'She made this salad and she made her special dressing and she's leaving with her salad to have dinner with Harry.'"

The claims have not been verified, and Wilde and Sudeikis have released a joint statement denying the allegations.

“As parents, it is incredibly upsetting to learn that a former nanny of our two young children would choose to make such false and scurrilous accusations about us publicly,” their statement reads.

“Her now 18-month long campaign of harassing us, as well as loved ones, close friends and colleagues, has reached its unfortunate apex.

“We will continue to focus on raising and protecting our children with the sincere hope that she will now choose to leave our family alone.”

The fact that a salad dressing is at the heart of a split has sparked a flurry of memes online. One tweet from Bizzy Emerson has been liked 27,200 times and shared on Instagram, and jokes that if she was Wilde, would "post the salad dressing recipe to my Instagram story and then turn off my phone".

The Don't Worry Darling director seems to have followed the advice (although we cannot confirm she did turn her phone off) and cryptically posted a page from Nora Ephron's autobiographical novel Heartburn.

Halfway down the page, a passage begins: "I taught Mark to make the vinaigrette." It then goes on to detail a simple dressing recipe, "Mix 2 tablespoons Grey Poupon mustard with 2 tablespoons good red wine vinegar. Then, whisking constantly with a fork, slowly add 6 tablespoons olive oil, until the vinaigrette is thick and creamy."

Ephron's recipe also gives a serving suggestion, saying: "This makes a very strong vinaigrette that’s perfect for salad greens like arugula and watercress and endive."

Wilde posted the page without comment, so it is not clear if she is sharing her actual recipe or making light of the nanny's claims.

Ephron's book is an autobiographical novel based on the romantic comedy filmmaker's marriage and divorce from American journalist Carl Bernstein. In the novel, food writer Rachel Samstat is based on Ephron and the character of Mark Feldman, on Bernstein.

Wilde and Sudeikis's split has been played out publicly. In April, Wilde was served legal papers from her ex-partner when speaking live on stage at Warner Bros' presentation at CinemaCon.

"This is for me, right?" asked Wilde asked when she was handed the envelope. "Very mysterious. I'm going to open it now ... Is this a script? OK, got it. Thank you," she said, before returning to her description of Don't Worry Darling.

But it was later confirmed that the document held legal papers concerning the couple's two children.

"Papers were drawn up to establish jurisdiction relating to the children of Ms Wilde and Mr Sudeikis," a source close to Sudeikis told AFP.

"Mr Sudeikis had no prior knowledge of the time or place that the envelope would have been delivered as this would solely be up to the process service company involved and he would never condone her being served in such an inappropriate manner."

Updated: October 19, 2022, 8:59 AM