Padma Lakshmi’s Italy Dining Advice

One of your editor’s favorite TV shows is Top Chef but I didn’t know the connections tha the host Padma Lakshmi has to Italy. She lived in Milan and Rome for six years and is the former host of the Italian hit television show Domenica In. In the current issue of La Cucina Italiana she shares her Italian dining recommendations.

Lakshmi recounts a restaurant in Italy that allowed her to indulge her love for both Italian and Italian cuisine. “There is a restaurant in Milan called Il Rigolo that has been there for almost 50 years. I used to go there for the lasagna al curry made with a creamy, curry bechamel. Eventually they taught me how to make it myself,” she says.

The Langhe in Piedmont is Lakshmi’s favorite region for eating. “I love the variety of Northern Italian food, and in particular the heavier autumnal dishes found in Piedmont, like vitello tonnato and all the wild mushrooms.

Where asked where she would go if flown to Italy for dinner, all expenses paid, the television host says “Latteria di San Marco in Milan.” She adds, “I would have whatever Maria is making.”