Chefs Story – Our Body is a Machine, Food is an Energy – Chef Bikram Vaidya

Just to let you know, I am from the center of the earth. I grew up in a Newari family in Kathmandu, Nepal, in Ason Tole. Ason is an ancient bazaar and trading center for India and Tibet. My surname is Vaidya, meaning Ayurvedic Doctor – my forefathers practiced Ayurveda, which is based on using food, herbs, and spices as medicine. So here I am a “Kitchen Doctor” teaching ancient wisdom and traditional ways of cooking at various public events, and at many schools, to raise health awareness. I am the Man with the PaN.

I began my tourism and hospitality journey 30 years ago in 1989 with my brother Puskar. When we co-founded Tom and Jerry Pub in Kathmandu (it is still successfully running, check it out here!).

After graduating from the Western Culinary Institute, I was fortunate to train under Chef Troy Cannan and Chef Mark Franz, owner of James Beard award nominee The Farallon.

“The kitchen is my temple; I dance, sing, smile, and create joy for myself and others.” 

My teaching career started more than 20 years ago in Nepal where I taught western food to Nepalese women, then later taught international cuisine at Le Cordon Bleu. I was the lead chef instructor at Oregon Culinary Institute for the past 16 years, thanks to my mentor, Chef Wilke.

A fascination with the flavors of the world led me to travel around the world learning different cuisine. In the end, I chose to focus on Nepalese cuisine because food is an integral part of our culture – when people walk into our house, the first thing we ask is “Have you eaten?” It’s the way we say hello! – Chef Bikram Vaidya

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