Meet Kicha a.k.a Nihal Raj from Kochi, a YouTube sensation and a 6-year-old chef who became one of the youngest guests ever to be invited on the Ellen DeGeneres Show. Kicha, who studies in the 1st grade, is the son of Rajagopal Krishnan and Ruby Rajagopal, who likes to bake at home.
“Kicha loves watching me bake,” Ruby told HuffPost India. “He would ask me if he could help me. Instead, I gave him small recipes which he could follow. He suggested ice popsicles and insisted his dad take a video and upload it on Facebook.”
Ruby encouraged her son’s interest in cooking. “I give him very kid friendly recipes. No cutting, chopping or cooking over fire,” she says. “If any of that is involved, he mentions in the video that I helped him out. The recipes I select are mostly baked ones or refrigerated ones.”
Kicha has over 9k subscribers on his YouTube channel, KichaTube HD, but he shot to fame when Facebook acquired rights for the young chef’s Mickey Mouse Mango ice cream video for $2,000.
An invite from the popular American television talk show, The Ellen DeGeneres Showwas the next milestone. “We have never applied nor tried for any shows,” Krishnan says. “We got a mail from the Ellen producer saying that they would like to invite him for the show. There were a few Skype chats with the producers and, later, they confirmed and gave us the recording date. Travel and hotel and all other expenses were taken care of.”
Watch the video here where young boy shows his mad culinary skills on Ellen’s show:
Kicha seems to have enjoyed the experience. “I had to do a cooking demo,” he recalls. “It was a dish I had already done. Kerala’s traditional breakfast puttu. I was so excited to be with Ellen and teach her to pronounce puttu kutti. She liked it very much and appreciated it”
Asked what his future plans were, Kicha replies, “I want to be an astronaut chef so that I can go to space and cook. I also want to invent a machine which has gravity that helps to cook in space.” To which his father adds, “I am not sure how long this interest would last. We leave all up to him and support whatever he likes.”