- Padma Lakshmi has hosted “Top Chef” since 2006, but there is still a lot you might not know about her.
- When she was young, she was in a car accident and was bullied at school.
- Now, she is a single mother, bestselling author, and can speak five languages fluently.
“I cringe to think about that,” she told InStyle in 2016.
When she became an American citizen, she officially changed her name to Padma Lakshmi in honor of her mother, Vijaya Lakshmi.
She said students also bullied her for being Indian.
“I didn’t feel any different, I didn’t feel any less American, even though I ate rice and curry or even though my name was Padma or I spoke to my mother in a different language, I felt as American as anybody else in my classroom,” she said. “But they didn’t feel I was as American.”
“My attitude about my body has grown and changed and morphed and evolved, as has my body,” she told Self in 2016. “It’s what sets me apart and makes me me, and even if someone could wave a magic wand I really don’t think I would choose to eliminate my scar.”
“Krishna’s father is very involved in her life, so he is a co-parent, but it’s different if you’re married and living with the child’s other parent,” Lakshmi told Yahoo News in 2021. “We don’t live together; we’re not together anymore. We are good friends and we have the same first priority, which is her.”
Lakshmi was also married to the novelist Salman Rushdie from 2004 to 2007.
“I am very fortunate to be on TV for a decade now and not be playing an ethnic role,” Lakshmi told Instyle in 2016. “That was a big thing for me.”
“I love food way too much to starve myself just to look good,” she told the magazine. “I will put in the work at the gym so I can enjoy what I eat.”
“I spent 25 percent of my life in bed because of this chronic illness that I had no idea I had. And it was always something that I was told I just had to put up with, that it was my lot as a woman to suffer with cramps because some girls got it and some girls didn’t,” Lakshmi told Self in 2016. “It wasn’t until I was properly diagnosed and got on the other side of my treatment, which included several surgeries, that I realized what normal really is.”
She founded the Endometriosis Foundation of America with her doctor, Tamer Seckin, in 2009 to help raise awareness of the disorder.
Most recently, she released her first children’s book, “Tomatoes for Neela,” in 2021.
“It’s also, more importantly, an intergenerational story about an Asian family who writes down all of the recipes that are important to them,” Lakshmi told Yahoo News in 2021 about “Tomatoes for Neela.” “The book tries to show young children how writing down recipes is literally saving pieces of our family history.”
“On the menu, there would be fried masala chicken, marinated in buttermilk, sea salt and sugar, then battered with Indian spices and chilli,” she told the publication in 2016. “There’d be rice, with black beans and spices. And there’d be lots of veg.”
The cheese board would have cheddar, manchego, and chutney.