Chrissy Teigen was embarrassed by her mother’s Thai cuisine as a child

  • Chrissy Teigen helped her mother, Pepper Teigen, turn her Thai recipes into a cookbook.
  • As an adult, Chrissy loves Pepper’s recipes, but as a kid she was embarrassed about them.
  • Pepper told Insider that now the two were cooking and eating their Thai food with the whole family.

Best-selling cookbook author Chrissy Teigen urged her mother, Vilailuck “Pepper” Teigen, to write her own cookbook. The home cooking icon had included some of her mother’s recipes in her two “Cravings” books, but now, as she wrote in the foreword to “The Pepper Thai Cookbook,” she wants that. people get “the full” Thai Mom “live.”

While she now has many favorite dishes her mom cooks – Pepper told Insider the book was mostly filled with them – Chrissy admittedly spent most of her childhood self-conscious about Pepper’s Thai cooking.

“Mum’s food looked different and smelled different – honestly I was a little embarrassed when I was young,” Chrissy wrote.

In an interview with Insider, Pepper said she remembers the times her daughter was ashamed of the smells and flavors she now adores.

“She was, you know, in fifth or sixth grade and very popular in her class,” Pepper told Insider. She said Chrissy would bring friends over to their house and she would adapt her cooking accordingly.

Pepper remembers young Chrissy asking for grilled cheese and pizza “like most kids.”

In the introduction to the book, Pepper wrote about a time when she “put herbs in one of my Thai salads and [Chrissy] shouted at me: ‘MOM! Why are you eating weed? “

For Pepper, cooking was a way to stay in touch with family and Thai roots.

Born in Thailand, Pepper grew up in a small town outside of Korat Town – a popular food town, according to the author. In the introduction to her book, Pepper wrote that she grew up around the kitchen and started helping her mother, a breakfast vendor, when she was in her third grade.

When she moved to the United States with Chrissy’s dad, Ron Teigen, she found herself driving over an hour just to find familiar ingredients like the fish sauce she wanted to cook with.

“Some days I cried because I missed this special flavor of Isaan’s food so much,” she wrote.

While not a popular meal choice for Ron, Chrissy and Pepper’s first daughter, Tina, she said she uses the food to remember her home and share her life – and the culinary legacy of his mother – with her children.

As an adult, Chrissy has a new appreciation for her mother’s food

Pepper said it was difficult to navigate at meal times when her daughters were young.

“I ate differently from them. I ate more spices, more fish sauce, more anchovies, so I waited until my family was done and then I would make mine,” a- she told Insider.

Pepper now lives with Chrissy, Chrissy’s husband John Legend, and their two children, and they all love to cook and eat together.

“Now I cook so openly,” Pepper said. “Our house smells of chili and all day long. People are more accepting of Thai food now. All of our friends eat whatever I offer them now.”

And Chrissy is such a fan of her mother’s recipes that she wanted her to write them all down in a collection that became “The Pepper Thai Cookbook”.

“I see she feels guilty for being embarrassed to grow up,” Pepper told Insider. She laughed as she remembered times when she listened to Thai music and Chrissy would say, “Turn it down! Lower it!

“But she’s fine now,” Pepper said. “She really realized, you know, that people learn as they grow up.” She said she didn’t blame him and described their relationship as “so close”.

The mother-daughter duo now cook together and help each other in the kitchen, sharing the same bond Pepper said she had with her own mother growing up.

“The Pepper Thai Cookbook” was released Tuesday.

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