Padma Lakshmi poses for Playboy in lace underwear

Padma Lakshmi poses for Playboy in lace underwear

Padma Lakshmi poses for Playboy in lace underwear

As she reveals her svelte figure in lace underwear for a sultry spread in Playboy magazine, Padma Lakshmi shows exactly why she has attracted some of the world’s most powerful and successful men.

And in an accompanying interview, the 42-year-old Top Chef star opens up about her three-year-marriage to British author Salman Rushdie, who is 23-years her senior.’Now there is somebody who has great wit and is a great flirt,’ she tells the magazine. ‘I don’t regret a day I spent with Salman, but it was tiring. He has a big life, and it only got bigger when we were together. I’m happy to have stood next to him holding his hand, but we were in very different parts of our lives.’Many commentators were baffled as to why the slim and beautiful Padma wed Rushdie, an award winning literary genius not known for his good looks.

‘Comments like that came out of ignorance,’ Padma says. ‘If you saw us together you would know exactly why we were together.’The couple’s marriage lasted three years until 2007, with Padma going on to have a baby daughter Krishna, now two-years-old, by computer mogul Adam Dell.Mid way through their marriage, Padma begun hosting duties for food competition show Top Chef which won the Emmy award for Outstanding Reality Competition programme back in 2010.The tenth season of the show aired last week on U.S. network Bravo.

‘I can cook, but I’m not a chef and I don’t want to be,’ she admits to Playboy. ‘I never aspired to run a restaurant.’What I am is an excellent taster. I have an incredibly sensitive palate, which is why I can do what I do.’If I taste a dish, I can usually replicate the ingredients. And if I kissed you, I could probably tell what you had for lunch.’Luckily, all that rich food doesn’t affect Padma’s svelte figure due to her ‘fast metabolism.’She says: ‘I’m tall, and my digestive tract is ironclad and can really take a beating. Having been a model for 15 years, I also know a thing or two about how to dress if I’ve put on a few pounds.

Lakshmi poses for Playboy

‘And I usually gain between 10 and 15 pounds over six weeks each season. Then I spend 12 weeks working it off. But it’s worth it.’The TV star admits that her model good looks makes her something of a man magnet, although she is usually unaware of her own attraction.’A lot of men get frustrated with me, actually, because I am like a guy,’ she says. Honestly, I’m like a truck driver trapped in this body. I don’t want to be your best friend. I don’t expect you to give me a birthday card or send me flowers.

‘Don’t get me wrong. That stuff’s nice, but I am a physical and sensual person. I love to be held. I love massages. I’m just not a Hallmark kind of gal.’Padma, who hails from Chennai, India, also reveals what attracts her in a man.’I want someone who’s a challenging adversary, who can tease me and get away with it, who can flirt and make me think and laugh and blush,’ she says. ‘But there’s an art to that. You either have it or you don’t.’Sex is good when the attraction is good. It’s not a technical skill. If my mind is engaged, the body will follow.’Playboy’s new issue hits newsstands Tuesday, November 20. – Dailymail