NEW ORLEANS - A year ago, La Boucherie chef Nathaniel Zimet was facing death. Tuesday night he was crowned as the latest 'Chopped' champion.
Zimet actually won the contest a few weeks ago when the segment was taped, but it aired for the first time Tuesday night on the Food Network.
Zimet was shot by a gunman three times while sitting in his truck during a robbery attempt in May 2011. He recalled sitting on his horn in an effort to get help.
After an extended hospital stay, he returned to put his chef's hat back on. He told the 'Chopped' crew that he was about 80 percent of his old self and said he was lucky to be alive.
Zimet didn't appear to be close to being chopped during any of the three rounds and ultimately won with a dumpling dessert that wowed the judges.
In one of the segments where the guest chefs talk to the camera, Zimet said he needed to win the contest to prove to himself that he still had it.
Zimet became the latest of about a half dozen New Orleans-area chefs to win the weekly show's top prize of $10,000.