Popular television chef, 79 year-old Jacques Pepin, is at home recovering from a minor stroke he suffered on Sunday evening. The Chicago Tribune reports that Pepin started showing signs of a stroke on Sunday evening, when he was in his Connecticut home with a few of his close friends.
Pepin was taken to a nearby hospital, where he received appropriate treatment for his symptoms in a timely manner. He was released from the hospital on Tuesday afternoon, and his daughter told the Associated Press that doctors fully expect Pepin to make a full recovery.
Pepin was scheduled to appear the International Association of Culinary Professionals conference in Washington, D.C., in honor of his 80th birthday, but the chef was forced to cancel his in-person appearance due to his stroke. Instead of going to annual conference, Pepin will appear via video conference to make a statement.
According to Pepin’s daughter, Claudine, her father is recovering nicely and attempting to return to his normal schedule.
“Oh my god, he made soup this morning… I will do my best to lighten the load, but he’s not of the mind to cancel anything. Honestly, he wanted to go to IACP. He’s like, ‘I’m talking. I can walk. Let’s go.’ “
Born in 1935, in Bourg-en-Bresse, France, Jacques was the second of three sons in his family. Pepin found his love for food while working in the family restaurant. His parents, Jennette and Jean-Victor Pepin, owned a restaurant named Le Pelican, which was where young son Jacques would spend his days in the kitchen learning how to cook.
When Pepin got a little bit older, he decided to move to Paris to receive some formal culinary training. Jacques found Chef Lucien Diat at the Plaza Athenee to do his training with. After Pepin felt like he was ready to start his own career, he became a personal chef. From 1956-1958, Pepin was a personal chef to three different French heads of state, including Charles de Gaulle.
In 1959, Pepin decided to expand even further on his career by making a big move to New York, which is known to be one of the leading food centers in the United States. Jacques took a job at the famous French restaurant Le Pavillion. He had only worked at the restaurant for about eight months when a regular customer came in and offered Pepin the chance to work alongside fellow French chef Pierre Franey, developing food lines for the popular restaurant chain Howard Johnson’s.
Eventually, Pepin decided to add television to his already impressive resume by starring in several cooking shows. One of the most acclaimed shows that Jacques was the host of starred another famous chef. Popular television personality Julia Child appeared alongside Pepin in the Emmy Award winning show, Julia and Jacques Cooking At Home.
Jacques will be airing his final public television show, Jacques Pepin: Heart & Soul, this fall. He also has a new cookbook coming out to accompany the show that has the same title.
[Photo courtesy of PBS]