Jacques Pépin Recounts The Time Julia Child Cut Herself With His Knife On Live TV - Exclusive

In modern times, you don't usually see much chaos during televised cooking demonstrations. Sure, competition shows like "Chopped" or "Top Chef" can get a little hectic, but educational cooking TV is generally shot ahead of time so any mishaps can be edited out. But this wasn't always the case. Jacques Pépin has been in the food television world for decades, and he was around when it was a little easier for things to go off the rails.

He often appeared alongside his friend, Julia Child. Their most iconic TV pairing may have been their collaborative instructional show, "Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home," but back in the day, these two famous chefs popped up everywhere. One of Julia and Jacques' most infamous TV appearances was on an episode of "The Tomorrow Show" with Tom Snyder, which was a late-night show that aired live. Jacques Pépin wrote about the near-disaster that happened on set that day in his new book, "The Art of the Chicken," and discussed how it all went down in an exclusive interview with Tasting Table.

How Julia Child recovered from cutting her finger

The cooking segment on "The Tomorrow Show" seemed like it would go well. Julia Child and Jacques Pépin had a great rapport and loved cooking together. As Pépin recalled, "With her, we never worried about recipes. We just cooked, and so that was great." However, calamity struck when Julia borrowed Jacques' razor-sharp knife right before the segment was set to begin, and she immediately sliced the tip of her finger. However, the show had to go on, and Jacques was able to patch up her wound before the cameras started rolling.

Julia wanted to keep her injury a secret, and the chefs could have hidden the accident, but Tom Snyder let the cat out of the bag, impishly asking Julia, "Would you mind if I tell people you cut your finger?" Apparently, Julia Child was not pleased to be embarrassed like that on live television, but she was later able to see the humor in the situation. It helped that the fiasco was turned into a hilarious "Saturday Night Live" sketch featuring Dan Aykroyd doing his best Julia Child impression (via YouTube).

Jacques Pépin's "Art of the Chicken" goes on sale September 27. You can purchase the book here.