Padma Lakshmi

Cookbook author, TV host, Actress
As a former high-fashion model, Padma Lakshmi made her mark strutting down runways in the 1990s for such haute couturiers as Giorgio Armani, Ralph Lauren and Alberta Ferretti. The onetime wife of controversial novelist ... Read more »
Born: 08/31/1970 in India

Filmography

Actor (22)

Eat: The Story of Food 2014 - 2015 (TV Show)

Interviewee

Top Chef 2006 - 2015 (Tv Show)

Host

Hollywood Game Night 2014 (Tv Show)

Actor

Royal Pains 2014 (Tv Show)

Herself

Whose Line Is It Anyway? 2014 (Tv Show)

Herself

The 2012 Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards 2012 - 2013 (TV Show)

Presenter

Rocco's Dinner Party 2011 (Tv Show)

Actor

Top Chef: Masters 2009 - 2011 (Tv Show)

Actor

30 Rock 2009 (Tv Show)

Actor

The A-List Awards 2008 - 2009 (TV Show)

Actor

The Late Show With David Letterman 2009 (Tv Show)

Guest

Bravo's A-List Awards 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Actor

Top Chef Holiday Special 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Judge

Top Chef: Watch What Happens Reunion 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Judge

Top Chef: 4-Star All-Stars 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)

Actor

Sharpe's Challenge 2005 - 2006 (TV Show)

Actor

The Mistress of Spices 2006 (Movie)

Geeta (Actor)

The Ten Commandments (ABC) 2005 - 2006 (TV Show)

Actor

Boom 2003 (Movie)

Shiela Bardez (Actor)

Enterprise 2002 (Tv Show)

Actor

Glitter 2001 (Movie)

Sylk (Actor)

Planet Food: Spain 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

As a former high-fashion model, Padma Lakshmi made her mark strutting down runways in the 1990s for such haute couturiers as Giorgio Armani, Ralph Lauren and Alberta Ferretti. The onetime wife of controversial novelist Salman Rushdie, author of 1988's controversial The Satanic Verses, Lakshmi was also a best-selling author in her own right. Her first book, the award-winning, Easy Exotic: A Model's Low-fat Recipes from Around the World (1999) sold extremely well, winning her accolades from the culinary world. A popular television personality to boot, Lakshmi also appeared on a number of programs, usually, as her glamorous self. Given her areas of expertise, it was only a matter of time before Lakshmi was hired to host her own cooking show. Her first program, "Padma's Passport" (Food Network, 2005-06) led to her next gig as host of cable's top-rated competitive reality program, "Top Chef" (Bravo, 2005- ). By 2010, the former model had become a brand unto herself, boasting a résumé that included stints as a cookbook author, reality show host, jewelry designer, and actress in television and film, with more occupational hats likely on the way.

Relationships

Adam Dell

Companion
Father of Lakshmi's daughter Krishna No longer together

Theodore Forstmann

Companion
Formerly linked to the late Princess Diana Died on Nov. 20, 2011 of brain cancer

Vijaya Lakshmi

Mother
Separated from Padma's father when she was one and divorced a year later

Krishna Lakshmi-Dell

Daughter
Born Feb. 20, 2010; father, Adam Dell

Salman Rushdie Actor

Husband
Lakshmi was the model for one of the central characters - and love interests - in Rushdie's 2001 novel Fury Married April 17, 2004 Divorced in 2007

Tom Stoppard Screenplay

Companion
Briefly dated No longer together

EDUCATION

Clark University

Worcester , Massachusetts

William Workman High School

City of Industry , California

Milestones

2009

Nominated for the 2009 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Host For A Reality Or Reality-Competition Program

2007

Released second cookbook Tangy, Tart, Hot and Sweet

2006

Joined Bravo's "Top Chef" at the start of the second season, replacing Katie Lee Joel as the host; earned an Emmy nomination in 2009 as Host for a Reality/Competition Program

2006

Appeared in ABC's mini-series "The Ten Commandments" with Dougray Scott, Naveen Andrews, and Omar Sharif

2005

Co-starred in Paul Mayeda Berges' "The Mistress of Spices"

2004

Portrayed Sean Bean's nemesis in the BBC's two-part mini-series "Sharpe's Challenge"

2003

Co-starred with Amitabh Bachchan and Jackie Shroff in the Bollywood film "Boom"

2002

Appeared as an alien princess in an episode of "Star Trek: Enterprise" (UPN)

2001

Hosted the Food Network series, "Padma's Passport"

2001

Made film debut as the lip synching disco singer, Sylk in "Glitter" with Mariah Carey

2000

Hosted a documentary series called "Planet Food" for the Food Network

1999

Published first cookbook Easy Exotic: Low-Fat Recipes from Around the World

1997

Made acting debut in the Italian series, "Linda e il brigadiere"

Co-hosted Italy's top-rated television show, "Domenica In"

Began modeling at age 20

Bonus Trivia

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Some sources say that Lakshmi was born in Kerala, India.

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In 1984, when she was 14 years old, Lakshmi was involved in a serious automobile accident, causing an injury to her right arm that required surgery, which left a 7-inch scar between her elbow and shoulder. This would become her signature feature.

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In May 2009, Lakshmi launched her namesake line of fine jewelry, PADMA at Bergdorf Goodman in New York.

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"I feel equally American and equally Indian. The way I explain how both of these identities coexist in me is the way you're different when you are with your wife than when you're with your child than when you're with your boss than when you're with a writer who you're competing with." - Lakshmi quoted in Esquire magazine, May 2010

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