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Love, Loss, and What We Ate: A Memoir

Love, Loss, and What We Ate: A Memoir

Written by Padma Lakshmi

Narrated by Padma Lakshmi


Love, Loss, and What We Ate: A Memoir

Written by Padma Lakshmi

Narrated by Padma Lakshmi

ratings:
4/5 (27 ratings)
Length:
12 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Mar 8, 2016
ISBN:
9780062445254
Format:
Audiobook

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Also available as bookBook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook

Description

A vivid memoir of food and family, survival and triumph, Love, Loss, and What We Ate traces the arc of Padma Lakshmi's unlikely path from an immigrant childhood to a complicated life in front of the camera—a tantalizing blend of Ruth Reichl's Tender at the Bone and Nora Ephron's Heartburn

Long before Padma Lakshmi ever stepped onto a television set, she learned that how we eat is an extension of how we love, how we comfort, how we forge a sense of home-and how we taste the world as we navigate our way through it. Shuttling between continents as a child, she lived a life of dislocation that would become habit as an adult, never quite at home in the world. And yet, through all her travels, her favorite food remained the simple rice she first ate sitting on the cool floor of her grandmother's kitchen in South India.

Poignant and surprising, Love, Loss, and What We Ate is Lakshmi's extraordinary account of her journey from that humble kitchen, ruled by ferocious and unforgettable women, to the judges' table of Top Chef and beyond. It chronicles the fierce devotion of the remarkable people who shaped her along the way, from her headstrong mother who flouted conservative Indian convention to make a life in New York, to her Brahmin grandfather—a brilliant engineer with an irrepressible sweet tooth-to the man seemingly wrong for her in every way who proved to be her truest ally. A memoir rich with sensual prose and punctuated with evocative recipes, it is alive with the scents, tastes, and textures of a life that spans complex geographies both internal and external.

Love, Loss, and What We Ate is an intimate and unexpected story of food and family—both the ones we are born to and the ones we create—and their enduring legacies.

A HarperAudio production.

Publisher:
Released:
Mar 8, 2016
ISBN:
9780062445254
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook

About the author

Padma Lakshmi is the Emmy-nominated host of the highly rated and critically acclaimed, Emmy-winning Bravo seriesTop Chef, and the author of three cookbooks and food titles: the award-winning Easy Exotic; Tangy, Tart, Hot & Sweet; and the Enclyclopedia of Spices and Herbs. In addition to her culinary achievements, Lakshmi has contributed to such magazines as Vogue, Gourmet, and Harper's Bazaar (UK and US), and penned a syndicated column on fashion and food for the New York Times. Her television-hosting credits include Planet Food and Padma's Passport, as well as other programs in the United States and abroad. A global style icon and the first internationally successful Indian supermodel, Lakshmi also helms companies of her own such as the Padma Collection and Easy Exotic. Lakshmi is a cofounder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America. Since 2009, the organization has advocated for early diagnosis, promoted research, and raised awareness in the medical community and the greater public about this devastating chronic disease which affects over 190 million women worldwide. She lives in New York City with her daughter.


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What people think about Love, Loss, and What We Ate

4.0
27 ratings / 6 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (5/5)
    As a fan of Top Chef, I admired the way Ms. Lakshmi hosted the show. I knew nothing about the rest of her life, but felt intrigued enough by her performance on that show to try her memoir. I did not expect that her life could have been so fascinating! She has had her share of ups and downs, from her modeling career to her hosting duties on food shows, as well as her involvement in other business ventures. Her personal life is also filled with highs and lows, from her marriage to Salman Rushdie, to her relationships with business tycoon Teddy Forstmann at the same time she was also involved with Adam Dell, whom she had a child with, despite the odds against her ever becoming pregnant due to her medical history. She has had an amazing life with yet more to come!
  • (4/5)
    I had no idea who Padma Lakshmi was until I opened this book. And the picture on the cover would not have enticed me to read it, but I have read a positive book review in a paper which got me interested. I would say it took guts to write this memoir - not because of some horrific disclosure, but simply due to the fact that she started her career as a model. People would judge, no matter what, no matter how difficult her path was or was not. And I am sure she knew it in her in heart. She starts the book with her short marriage to Salman Rushdie (which was an eye-opener for me in more than one way - just read p. 39-40 about him), and only then revisits her childhood and her life since then. I was struck by the fact how unconventional (by Indian standards) her mother's character was when Padma was growing up. At times her narrative is self-effacing to a degree and also honest (especially her first immigrant experiences), and at times I had the feeling she is prevaricating about certain events. But of course there is no such "rule" that you disclose EVERYTHING in a memoir...
  • (3/5)
    A few years ago when I was still in high school I took a Culinary Arts elective class where I figured I’d learn how to do some pretty plating. There were only about three girls that took the class seriously and I was not one of them. At least I learned how to decorate a cupcake with marshmallow flower petals. Anyway, one of the things the teacher did to fill the time was make us watch Top Chef and see how real chefs would choose spices and whatnot then how they would present the meal to the judges’ table. That was the first time I ever watched the show and saw Padma Lakshmi. I don’t think I’d ever heard of her before then.When I first picked up this book I didn’t even remember that was her. It was almost a pleasant surprise to find a book about a woman that paved her own way and some recipes to try out. Only recently have I learned of the scandals she got herself into, i.e. entering relationships with much older men, custody battles, etc. but that I still didn’t have an opinion about her until after I read the book.Lakshmi tells her life story connecting everything back to her love of food. She was a model yet that wasn’t what garnered her lots of attention it was her cookbook. Being a model helped sell the book but that was what got her into writing. Her biggest gig had to do with food and in a way it still is. She’s honest with her experiences and doesn’t shy away from sharing details that, in my opinion, make her look bad. I don’t think we would make good friends but she seems like the kind of person that would make going to a fancy lunch kind of fun.
  • (2/5)
    Somewhat hard to follow with back and forth between a life event, and then all the different things leading up to it. Not particularly well written. Does us interesting vocabulary. It is memoir of a privileged life. Even though this author admits and apologizes for her selfishness, it is quite evident and unsettling to think many people make decisions like this without considering the consequences to others.
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed it because I like Padma. Several parts are very moving, I cried when she lost Teddy. Padma’s reading is very good, she has a hypnotic quality to her voice.
  • (2/5)
    As memoirs go all I can say about this one is that it's different. Padma Lakshmi has led a life that no one else could have and she does a decent job of describing it. She seems somewhat ambivalent most of the time. Her descriptions of her Brahminical heritage sound despondent like she is pining for them. They are not accurate quite often. For example no self-respecting Brahmin priest would schedule an annaprasanam" on Saturday at 9 AM since that is an inauspicious time.