Padma Parvati Lakshmi (Malayalam: പത്മ പാർവ്വതി ലക്ഷ്മി; born September 1, 1970) is an Indian American cookbook author, actress, and model. She has been the host of the US reality television program Top Chef since season two. In 2010, Top Chef was nominated for an Emmy Award and won for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program.

Her first cookbook Easy Exotic was awarded Best First Book at the 1999 World Cookbook Awards at Versailles. She was host of the Food Network series, Padma's Passport, which was part of the larger series Melting Pot, in 2001. She also hosted two one-hour specials on India and Spain for the British culinary tourism show Planet Food, which have been broadcast on the Food Network in the US and internationally on the Discovery Channels. Her second cookbook, Tangy, Tart, Hot and Sweet, was released October 2, 2007.

On April 17, 2004, in New York City, Lakshmi married the novelist Salman Rushdie, 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).

When questioned about Rushdie's age (he is only seven years younger than her father) and her long estrangement from her father (whom she has described as "the most sexy, manic, in-shape, lean, tall, handsome man I have ever met"), Lakshmi has said that there may be a correlation: "I think that we are attracted to what we feel we need."
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