Amrita Narain started teaching cooking over 25 years ago, but as a full-time working mother she decided to take a break. Now retired, she reignited her passion for teaching when she heard about Diaspo. She is now instructing people who share her passion for food through online classes. Teaching gave her something to do during the pandemic when the lockdowns began. Her recipes aren’t from any cookbooks—they are unique to her family, gathered through letters from her mother and sister over 30 years ago. Sharing these recipes, especially with the younger generations, fills her with gratitude and pride—it allows her to pass on the belonging and identity of her Indian heritage.
Amrita recently spoke to a 17-year-old participant of her online cooking class on Southern Indian cuisine. He told her: “Growing up in London, we dress British and speak British and when we eat Indian food it often tastes like fast food. Learning how my grandmother in Chennai was cooking gives me the sensation of the culture that I come from.” Amrita is one of Diaspo’s three dozen senior private chefs, each of whom are from different cultural backgrounds. The community continues to grow each month and the fact Amrita is earning extra money from teaching these classes is icing on the cake.
Diaspo runs live cooking classes taught by older adult home cooks. For these cooks, it is a chance to improve their well-being while doing something they love: preserving their culture and traditions by teaching the recipes and techniques passed down through their families.
In order to lead their classes, each cook is trained to use current technology. These older adult cooks can earn money flexibly, teaching from their home kitchen and on their own schedule.
Launched one year ago with the ambition to have 100 home cooks and 10,000 dishes made, Diaspo has made great progress in a short period of time. They have recruited over 30 home cooks to share their family dishes and techniques. More than 1,500 dishes have been made, and participants have given the program more than 50 five star reviews.
Class options include Creole, Caribbean, Indian, Moroccan, Libyan, Pakistani and more. Each class is intimate and interactive so participants can make meaningful connections with the teachers while learning the steps, stories, and secrets behind these heritage recipes. Learn more at www.joindiaspo.com and subscribe to Diaspo's YouTube channel here!