As the first Native American Indigenous Chef to be featured on Food Network's Chopped tv show, I proudly serve authentic Native cuisine based on the Kickapoo heritage, cooking Native food such as bison, vinson squash, and corn with recipes passed on through the generations.
I grew up in Oakland, in the urban Native American community and was raised with fellow Native American people from many different Tribes. While I am a member of the Kickapoo tribe from Oklahoma, I learned how to cook many styles of Native food and know how our foods bring us together as people. I enjoyed working with my grandmother in her kitchen to learn our traditional food and to pass on the knowledge to my children and community. My love for Native food began as a young child.
I successfully completed the Bread Project program in Oakland and went to La Cocina in San Francisco. My dream is to make my Native community and my family and children proud. I received the Indigenous Artist and Activist Award, and was inducted into the Native American Almanac as the first Native American Woman Entrepreneur Catering Business. I hope one day, soon, to open a restaurant in the Bay Area.
It is an honor to serve Native cuisine to you.
~ Chef Crystal Wahpepah