From cookbooks to winning an Emmy Award, Ming Tsai had everything going right for him until his wife’s cancer took precedence over everything in his life.

His wife Polly Talbot’s diagnosis of lung cancer was an emotional blow to Ming and their sons. They all stood by her and vowed to help her fight it, no matter what the survival chances. Despite the numerous speculations about her imminent death, Tsai’s wife made a remarkable comeback.   

Anxiety and Awards

The Tsai family stood shoulder to shoulder with Polly to ensure that she felt normal. In 2018, Ming Tsai was awarded the ‘Impact Award’ at the 'American Cancer Society’s California Spirit 33 Gourmet Garden Party' for his relentless work with Family Reach, a national organization that helps families through their financial crisis when struck by cancer. It was on this occasion that he broke the news about his wife’s condition.

Ming’s wife Polly is currently undergoing a pill treatment that costs $17,000! Though she has to take only one pill a month and is recuperating well, the financial impact is there for all to see.

This much-revered chef has been extremely brave and kept faith throughout the trying times. He recently launched, ‘MingBings’ a range of highly nutritious vegan patties to benefit cancer initiatives. Some of the profits from this initiative, go to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. This is the same institute where Ming’s wife has been undergoing treatment for three long years. A portion of the profits goes to Family Reach, with which Ming is still very closely associated.

A Man With A Mission

With 148,740 followers on his Facebook page and many eminent awards that adorn his home, Ming continues to be a humble and down-to-earth person. His wife’s illness made him realize the financial challenges that others face in similar situations. He now strives towards helping such individuals through Family Reach, with the hope that it will offer them immense succor and help them tide through it bravely.

Born in a family of food enthusiasts, Ming is a philanthropist and believes deeply in human values. In 2010 he came across Darlene, a cancer patient who had expressed a desire to dine at his restaurant, Blue Ginger. He cooked the meal for Darlene and her family and personally attended to them. Through Family Reach, he realized the impact of cancer and when his Polly, wife was diagnosed with lung cancer, he knew exactly what she would have to endure.

Chef Ming Tsai at his restaurant Blue Ginger (Source: The Cornell Club Of Boston)

Despite the challenges thrown at him, he continues with his gourmet offerings and hopes that at least one of his two sons chooses to wear the Chef’s hat. After all, it runs in the family!