Nirmala’s roots stem from a tribe of master rice growers from Northern India who immigrated to Guyana, a small South American nation with strong Caribbean roots.
This is where she grew up with her extended family and learned to cook as a young child with no running water or electricity, as well as to build soils, curate seed and spice libraries, and build berms to create rice paddies. Little did Nirmala know, back then, that she was seeding her own future.
Nirmala immigrated to United States after her uncle signed up to serve in the U.S. military in exchange for citizenship. He fought in Vietnam for two tours to become an American citizen.
After living a corporate life for some years, Nirmala wondered if she was passively living the epilogue of her life—so she chose to break that mold.
Nirmala has travelled the world, visiting more than 185 countries, connecting with cultures, procuring spices from small farmers and forecasting global trends for Fortune 500 companies.
In 2001, she founded Nirmala’s Kitchen, a spice company that has today become a global lifestyle organization, seeking to educate through culture, food, wellness, as well as multiple travel-memoir cookbooks (In Nirmala’s Kitchen and Nirmala’s Edible Diary). During the past two decades Nirmala has rescued and empowered sexually abused orphans through her foundation, and envisioning a global enterprise.
Her television show Nirmala’s Spice World is globally syndicated in eight languages and Nirmala uses it as a platform to send her message of positive change through mindful Ayurveda, culinary wellness and cultural diversity—all through spices.
Today, Nirmala champions her humanitarian endeavors through the Nirmala's Farmstead Foundation.
Nirmala is passionate about the future of our children, she is the author of Ellishiva Cinnamon, a series of environmentally themed young adult novels that she has written to speak to the next generation about the values that we all share. For centuries, our ancestors lived in kinship with their environment. In today’s world, however, it is all too easy to lose sight of that relationship and Ellishiva is the heroine who can make those connections. Her story is inspired by real-world historical events, where fantasy comes alive around the issues of bio- and cultural diversity, love of family, respect, and dignity.
Each copy of Ellishiva Cinnamon sold, we pledge to donate 100% of our net profits to the Nirmala's Farmstead Foundation to empower, educate, and cultivate future generations of farmers, agricultural leaders, and natural resource curators through ancient wisdom and complexities of modern living.