Manhattanite Padma Lakshmi’s new soul-nourishing show, Taste the Nation, celebrates the diverse culinary culture of our country—and the very essence of American life.
Multihyphenate Padma Lakshmi is not new to serving up delicious culinary content. The supermodel, author and Top Chef host added something else to her plate this summer with the debut of her new Hulu show, Taste the Nation.
The show takes a deep dive into America’s epicurean landscape as Lakshmi travels across the nation to meet with different cultures and explore their indigenous cuisines. The 10 half-hour episodes will each visit a different location.
“I think Taste the Nation will remind people, I hope, that we are more alike than we are different,” Lakshmi says, “that while we may speak a different language or eat a different kind of food, we all want the same things. We all want a better life for our kids; we want them to just be safe and thrive and to be educated. We want to be able to provide our families with a calm home, and we want to be able to take care of our elders, and we want our children to take care of us when we’re older. Those are universal human desires and values. Those values do not have borders.”
As comfort cooking trends across the globe during the COVID-19 crisis, Lakshmi’s new show spotlights how these dishes truly tell the tale of who we are as people. “I think that’s the kind of cooking I’m interested in,” she explains. “Most Americans can’t afford to go to a Michelin-star [restaurant] all the time. That’s a very special event or treat for most families. To me, the interesting food is the food being made in average homes across this nation... and I think you can tell a lot about who a person or a community is by looking at the food they eat.”
“It’s a very, very personal project for me,” she says. “I can’t wait for people to see it because I do think it shows us an accurate portrait of who Americans are—and what America is in all of its beauty and diversity."
Photography by: Joe Schildhorn/bfa.com