About Veggie Mamas

Kumari Sauden is one of my first friends from the time I came to settle down in Kathmandu from Bangkok. We have been friends since 1990. We both come from heavy meat eating communities. Kumari belongs to the Limbu ethnic group in eastern Nepal. She became vegetarian a few years back. Both of us have been working with development aid sector. It may be midlife crisis or what we do not know, but both of us wanted to try something different from office life and development work. Since I had been talking for some years about wanting to promote vegetarian food we decided to start with short term ventures such as food stalls at special events.

Tsering Lhantso who is still making up her mind whether she wants to continue to be a part of Veggie Mamas, was born in Nepal. Her parents are from Kham Province of Eastern Tibet. She is a long time family friend of my husband’s. She is very good with preparing Tibetan food, especially Tibetan dumplings (momos). When I approached her about the food stall for the Teej Festival (our first venture) she had also been thinking of selling some fast food snacks at the Tibetan refugee settlement where we live. Tsering Lhantso is not particular about vegetarianism, but agreed to go along with us.

My name is Kesang Renchen. Both my parents are from Kham Province of Eastern Tibet. I was born and brought up in Darjeeling in northeast India. I finished my college in Darjeeling and then I lived in Thailand for 10 years. Now for the past 20 years I have been living in Kathmandu, Nepal. I have worked in the development aid sector for most of my life – writing reports, case studies, interpreting for expatriate staff. I have also worked with street children and youth. I have worked with marginalised groups of rural women, indigenous people and so called “low caste” communities in rural Nepal.

“Wise Selfishness”

I have always had a special place in my heart for linking whatever I do with “wise selfishness”. I believe implicitly that if we think of the common benefit of all we will always get the best out of any given situation. I believe in this even though in practice I fail often and will continue to do so more often than not. But I also believe that this is what life is all about, not giving up on the principles of a humane society.

What do we need help with

Friends to walk together with us in realizing the Planet of Animal Lovers.

  • Help in establishing and promoting the veggie food business so that we can provide proper quality standard and delicious veggie food at competitive prices (where others are using shortcuts and providing low standard food)

  • Information and resource sharing (recipes, publications, promotional items)

  • Networking

  • Human resource development – opportunities to learn about veggie cooking, hygienic, efficient ways of cooking, ethical and yet profitable ways of doing the business

  • Technical and material – necessary equipment (appropriate to our location)

  • Sponsorship from like minded organizations/groups/individuals whose enterprises we could advertise as supporters

Some basic facts about Nepal

Nepal lies sandwiched between Tibet in the north and India in the south, east and west. The Himalayan range covers the northern stretch from the west to the east. Its topography ranges from the highest snow-clad peaks in the world to the fertile southern plains called terai in Nepali. The area coverage of Nepal is approximately 147,181 sq.km. The capital of Nepal is Kathmandu valley. Nepal’s population according to the 2001 census is 18.8 million. Nepal is famous for Mount Everest (Sagarmatha) the highest peak in the world measuring 8,848 meters.

More Veggie Mama Stories:
- Losing a bit of compassion
- No Mashpo Momos!!!
- The Veggie Mamas’ Dream
- My First Shot at Becoming Vegetarian
- Mashpo Momo on the Go!
- Thank you my son
- About Veggie Mamas

Try the Mashpo Momo Recipe tonight!

Re: About Veggie Mamas

You have a beautiful story and a glorious vision. I pray that Tsering choses to remain a part of the Veggie Mamas. I am looking forward to reading about your progress.

Wishing you fabulous fortune,

Re: About Veggie Mamas

Dear Sheila,

Thank you for your encouraging words. I do hope this will encourage you to also share stories or ideas about how we can step by step contribute to a more caring world - through simple means such as eating one vegetarian meal a week.

will keep you posted, kesang

Re: About Veggie Mamas


You’re on. I have told told all my friends to read your stories and I will rise to your challenge and eat one vegetarian meal a week. My husband grumbles, but he cannot deny contributing a little bit of compassion. Especially when I make so of the delicious recipes on this site. We both loved eating your mashpo momos. The are most delicious.

thank you,


Re: About Veggie Mamas

Great work Kesang, keep it up. why so serious in the picture? Kumari is full of smiles as usual. continue the good work gals. With full support.


Re: About Veggie Mamas

I am not a vegetarian by any stretch of the imagination, but I have enjoyed reading your stories. I have cooked enough dinner parties to have a good laugh at your frozen mashpo debacle.

Keep up the good work. Thank you for sharing,

Re: About Veggie Mamas

To all of the Veggie Mamas,

I have really enjoyed reading about your adventures, challenges and philosophies. You may be geographically far away, but your words have brought you close to us all. I know that all of us long to hear more.

I have read your stories to my children. Too often our young ones are so sheltered in the West. Thank you for helping me to broaden their horizons and learn more about a culture that is not their own.

Wishing you continued success.


Re: About Veggie Mamas