Chef nearly loses his hand in pasta machine freak accident

When Philadelphia pasta master Joe Cicala reached into a pasta machine to try and force through some sticky dough, he heard a sound “like popcorn exploding.” That sound was of his bones being crushed.


NSFW    PHILADELPHIA — A high-profile chef nearly lost his hand on Sunday, when it got stuck in a pasta machine at his upmarket Philadelphia restaurant, Le Virtu.

Pasta master Joe Cicala was rolling dough on Mother’s Day, when he thought it would be a good idea to experiment with fancy-schmancy grano arso flour and charred wheat berries.

Chef Joe added too much water to the mix, making the dough sticky. So he reached into the machine to try and force it through. And that’s when he heard a sound like exploding popcorn — it was the sound of his bones being crushed, Joe told

All alone in the kitchen, Joe knocked his iPhone off the table with his free hand and asked Siri to call for help.

When the paramedics arrived they gave him a shot of morphine and put the machine in reverse to release his trapped hand.

Chef Joe was rushed to the hospital, and luckily, doctors were able to reattach the crushed bones in his hand with minimal nerve damage. However, he may lose the feeling in his pinky finger forever.

Chef Joe is currently doped up on prescription drugs as he recovers from his ordeal. He expects to be back in the kitchen in about six weeks.
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