For over thirty years, Khen has been a beloved presence on Martha’s Vineyard and generations have lined up for her amazing egg rolls, cold rolls, and all the other creative vegetarian treats.
Thi Khen Tran’s long and improbable journey began in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam in 1938. Born to farmers and weavers in a small village, her childhood was dominated by the violence of the French occupation. She was unable to attend school and married young in a time of scarcity.
Khen's struggle to support her two young children and her mother-in-law took her to the United States to work as a nanny. The American War in Vietnam prevented her from returning and then a lucky break lead her to work with the Taylor family, who brought her to New York and then Martha’s Vineyard to care for their children.
With the encouragement and participation of the Taylors, especially their children, Lindsay, Lauren and Daisy, Khen revealed her refined skills as a chef and opened her stand at the West Tisbury Farmer’s Market in 1982. Since then, her daughter Luyen and son Khuyen, with their own families, have come to join her here and expand her business. Her grandson Anh, partners with her now, and in addition presents his own line of delicious marmalades and breads.