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Friday, 10 January 2014

Padma Lakshmi

Padma Parvati Lakshmi (born September 1, 1970) is an Indian-born American cookbook author, actress, model and television host. Her debut cookbook Easy Exoticwon her the "Best First Book" award at the 1999 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards. She has been the host of the US reality television program Top Chef since season two in 2006, for which she received a nomination for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program. In 2010, Top Chef won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program.

Padma Lakshmi was born in Chennai, India. Her father was a Pfizer executive, and her mother, Vijaya, the first wife of her father, was a nurse who specialized in suicide prevention. Her mother tongue is Tamil. She grew up shuttling between her grandparents in Chennai and her mother in New York. She is her parents' only child from this marriage. Her parents separated when she was age one. They divorced a year later. Both parents later remarried, and Lakshmi has a younger paternal half-brother and half-sister. The latter formerly worked as an actress and classical dancer but is now pursuing a career with children with special needs. In an interview in The Guardian. Lakshmi said, "My father had quit his job as an executive at Pfizer to manage her career. That was kind of like rubbing salt in the wound. I didn't understand why he wanted that relationship with her, and not with me."

In 1984, when she was 14 years old, Lakshmi was hospitalized for two weeks, eventually diagnosed with Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, which is caused by hypersensitivity to an infection or certain kinds of medications. Two days after discharge from the hospital, she was in a car accident in Malibu, California, causing an injury to her right arm that required surgery, which left a 7-inch scar between her elbow and shoulder. The incident took place on a Sunday afternoon as Lakshmi was being driven home from a Hindu temple in Malibu, where her mother had taken her to give thanks for the healing. She remembers a flash of orange, looking over to see the large car upon her. Padma describes the event in the April 2001 edition of Vogue, saying, "Being in a car crash was like an exhilarating hallucination, an unbelievable moment that oddly remains one of the most beautiful images in my memory." The accident also left Lakshmi with a fractured right hip and a shattered upper right arm.

On April 17, 2004, in New York City, Lakshmi married the novelist Salman Rushdie, twenty-three years her senior, to whom she was introduced at a party in 1999 hosted by the journalist and editor Tina Brown. On July 2, 2007, the couple filed for divorce. She is the model for one of the central characters – and love interests – in Rushdie's novel Fury (a novel dedicated to her as well).

On October 1, 2009, after years of struggling with endometriosis, a condition that causes pelvic pain and has been associated with infertility, Lakshmi confirmed that she was pregnant. Lakshmi also co-founded The Endometriosis Foundation of America, which is a nonprofit organization focused on increasing awareness, education, research, and legislative advocacy against the disease. On February 20, 2010, Lakshmi gave birth to a baby girl named Krishna Thea Lakshmi. Although the father's identity was not initially given, it was later revealed to be venture capitalist Adam Dell. In January 2011, Dell sued Lakshmi for sole custody of their daughter. They reached an agreement in March 2012, settling out of court, with Dell being granted increased custody and visitation rights and their daughter's full name changed to Krishna Thea Lakshmi-Dell.

Although professing little interest in fashion, Lakshmi has written articles on style for the American edition of Voguemagazine, at Anna Wintour's request, and writes her own column on style in Harper's Bazaar, following a commission from Editor Glenda Bailey.

Lakshmi was brought up as a vegetarian and has admitted that because of this, she sometimes becomes "squeamish" when sampling other cultural delicacies. In 2009, she starred in a television advertisement for the Carl's Jr. restaurant chain eating a Western Bacon Cheeseburger and in her second cookbook Tangy, Tart, Hot and Sweet she credits the chain with bringing her away from vegetarianism during her teenage years.

Padma Lakshmi has dated Princess Diana's ex-financier Theodore 'Teddy' Forstmann. He has left an undisclosed sum of money in a trust fund for Padma Lakshmi's two-year-old daughter, Krishna. It had been reported that despite not being her father, Forstmann had been, "....carrying out the role of father since the moment Krishna was delivered into his arms." 

















































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