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Cooking It Up: Road to Becoming An Executive Chef

Hey Lovelies,

I am so excited to announce that season two of the, “Educated Black Queen” podcast is out now!

You can listen to the full podcast here on Spotify!

This month I had an opportunity to speak with Executive Chef and Owner of The Damel restaurant, Oumar Diouf about his career and life journey.

Chef Diouf was originally born in Senegal in West Africa. Growing up in a family of six, Chef Diouf took to the kitchen at an early age when his father passed.

He took care of the family cooking meals every night. His family has always been the biggest support system in his life by giving him courage and love.

“Family is the only thing permanent in life,” said Chef Diouf.

Chef Diouf had a second love for playing soccer in Argentina but that career path shortly ended once he got injured and couldn’t play anymore.

This minor setback gave Chef Diouf time to go to figure out what he really wanted out of life. He decided to go to culinary school and over the last five years became a professional Chef.

On his road to becoming a Executive Chef, Diouf faced adversity. Growing up he says as a “boy in the kitchen” 25 years ago it was not easy and he faced a lot of bullying and pushback.

However that did not stop him from opening his first restaurant in Argentina.

The Damel is a West African and South American Restaurant.

The restaurant was named to honor the birthpalace of Chef Oumar. The Damel aims to be a leader when it comes to quality cuisine at an affordable price.

Chef Diouf combined his experiences with Senegalese, Argentina and Brazilian cultures to create a fusion of the cuisines and fill gap for Afro-Brazilian food in Oakland, California.

“The two best days in your life is when you was born and when you know why you were born for,” said Chef Diouf.

Being in service of others is something he has always done and valued in his life.

Chef Diouf founded The Damel Foundation, a charitable organization based in Oakland, CA focused on helping disadvantaged individuals, families, and communities in Senegal, Africa.

The organization organizes different programs focused on education, environmental development, and more.

The Damel Foundation also partners with residential and commercial industries, specifically immigrants, who want to give back and help with our cause.

Chef Diouf advices anyone in pursuit of their passion to do something you enjoy and you’ll never work a day in your life!

To find out more ways you can help and donate, you can visit The Damel Foundation on there website here.

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