"I really had no idea what I was going to get back to. At that point, I don’t think the doctor even knew," he said Tuesday on TODAY.
"It was really scary because that’s part of me that I call my inner child. When I think about ‘Cake Boss,’ or I think about these cakes that I make, I think that anything in the world is possible, and then I go and make it happen with my hands. This is what I do. And I felt like part of that might not ever be there again."
Valastro said he has made great strides. He shared that he was able to make a fist in February, about six months after the injury, and now feels about "about 95% back."
"I don’t think I’m going to be a hand model," he joked while showing off his hand and drawing laughs from the TODAY team.
"I might have to get another surgery over time, but considering what happened, a huge metal spike through my hand, the fact that I’m here talking to you guys today doing what I’m doing — and listen, the technology. I had nerve damage and she repaired the nerve. These fingers here, for like a year, just felt tingly and asleep, but now the nerve’s starting to regenerate and it actually feels back to normal."
In September, Valastro also told Rachael Ray that his hand was 95% healed.
“If that’s as good as it’s going to get, Rachael, I’ll take it,” he said.
About a week after his accident, Valastro recounted what happened when his hand got jammed in the pin setter at his at-home bowling alley.
"I thought I was going to faint, I looked at my hand and there was blood everywhere and I was stuck, the rod going back and forth because the machine goes back and forth," he told TODAY. "Something told me to stay calm."
Valastro has indeed endured a long road to recovery, undergoing multiple surgeries over the last year and coping with concerns that he would not be able to bake again, although he was back at it less than a month later.