Meet Our Chefs: Devinder Kumar

Devinder Kumar, Chef de Cuisine

Chef Devinder Kumar

Devinder began his career as a pharmacist, studying medicine and its derivation from natural sources. To support his education he took a part-time role in an Indian restaurant, which is where he first became enthralled with the spirit of hospitality. Deciding that he would rather nourish others with food than with medicine, he hung up his lab coat in exchange for a chef’s coat.

With an entrepreneurial spirit he took over the restaurant where his passion was first sparked, Taj Palace in San Jose. He founded two more restaurants, also in San Jose, focusing on Italian comfort-fare of pizza and pasta. Fascinated by the versatility of cuisine, Devinder was a forerunner of desi pizza, topping his pies with Indian dishes such as palak paneer (spinach with paneer cheese) and tandoori chicken.

After selling these successful restaurants, Devinder joined R&DE Stanford Dining in 2010. Demonstrating his skill and dedication, he quickly rose from Sous Chef to Chef de Cuisine. As Chef de Cuisine for Florence Moore Dining, Devinder combines his knowledge of food and medicine to create enticing dishes that are nutritionally balanced. Of his culinary perspective, he says, “I understand how food functions in the kitchen as well as in the body, and I bring this intention to my menu.” He is also proud of his involvement with the annual Diwali celebration, Sunday Night Indian Dinners, and the Kosher Dinner Program.