Though she’s not naked, the Top Chef host still looks plenty hot in white lace, although it’s a soft-focus, retro, rather innocent type of hot. (And oddly familiar, too: she appeared in all-white for More last month.) The former model dishes about the perks and perils of working on a cooking show, what she wants out of a relationship, and how she defines herself. Here are some highlights:
On staying slim while eating all season: I’m lucky. I have a fast metabolism, 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. 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. When the timer goes off and the food is ready, I’m really excited to eat.
On what she wants in a man: A lot of men get frustrated with me, actually, because I am like a guy. 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. I don’t need fancy trips. You could take me across the street. 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. 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. But there’s an art to that. You either have it or you don’t.
On how she wants to be defined: The thing is, beauty is no accomplishment on its own. It’s what you do with it…. I don’t want to be beholden to anyone or anything. I have my daughter and the people I love in my family. But what I value most is freedom. This may sound lame, but when I first came to this country I was four years old. I flew alone as an unaccompanied minor on Air India. In those days, you made a million stops—Cairo, Rome, London and then New York. I’m sure my mom got me a cheap ticket since we were broke. But I remember wanting to be like those airline hostesses. They were so glamorous. They wore these beautiful saris. They had these big bouffant hairdos and little Samsonite beauty cases. They got to travel the world and were independent and did whatever the f**k they wanted. They didn’t answer to anybody. They knew what was important in their lives, and they had the opportunity to see the world and do what they wanted. That’s what I wanted, and now that I say it, I guess that’s what my life is. I can’t really complain.
More photos after.
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