[TechSparks 2020] When you're the first to break the code, you also become the reference: Chef Vikas Khanna

At TechSparks 2020, Michelin Star Chef Vikas Khanna speaks about breaking formats, keeping the faith, and representing India on the global stage.

When Michelin Star Chef Vikas Khanna started cooking Indian cuisine in New York 20 years ago, people told him he was on the wrong path. Start cooking European cuisine, eminent people told him. It would have been easy to abandon the path he had chosen because, at the time, very little Indian culture existed in New York.

But nothing deterred Vikas who considers himself a proud product of India. He used all his training to keep bettering himself, and against all odds helped put India on the map for its exquisite cuisine. Playing in the global arena took guts, and the chef didn't shy away.

"When you're on the global stage, you're not only under the microscope for every dish you create, but you're also subjected to extreme criticism. But if you keep working hard, stay disciplined, keep reinventing yourself, there's something you could spark in this world," he said, speaking at YourStory's TechSparks 2020 event. "When you become the first to break the code, you also become the reference," he added.

Over the years, Vikas has engaged deeper with Indian cuisine, and explored the complex bond food has with faith in the country. He has created new flavours, catered for prestigious country leaders, written numerous books, judged cooking events, and hosted TV shows - India features prominently in all those things.

Vikas said he uses his work to motivate people to do more and do things that have never been done before. Technology is a great tool that the youth of today need to take India to new heights, he said.

"We must use the power of technology to not just represent our craft, but our families, our cities, our country, and our people," Vikas said.
Edited by Teja Lele Desai