Last night Aarti Sequeira joined the list of “Next Food Network Star” winners, beating out Tom Pizzica and Herb Mesa. She will launch her new show, “Aarti Paarti,” next week after getting a little help from fellow Food Network star Rachael Ray in filming her pilot (first episode).
Aarti was a fan favorite from the beginning thanks to her bubbly, adorable demeanor. She previously hosted the “Aarti Paarti” cooking show on YouTube, and she has a blog by the same name. Her husband, Brendan, suggested the name of the show. All together: Awwww!
Here’s five things you should know about Aarti, including what she and Brendan plan to name their first child (she says she wants a “whole football team” once they have enough money – this new Food Network show should help!).
1. Aarti, a South Indian native who grew up in Dubai, started out as a journalism major at Northwestern University.
2. She didn’t start cooking seriously until after she graduated from college and later moved from New York to Los Angeles to be with her new husband, an actor.
3. She calls her cooking style “Indian food by way of America,” and she has lots of yummy recipes on her blog, aartipaarti.com. (I am partial to the pumpkin oatmeal.)
4. She says on her blog that she “can’t wait” to have kids as soon as she and her husband have more money. What will they name their first child? Her husband favors “Quest” for a boy, and Aarti thinks they’ll have more boys than girls, though she warns: “I’ll get ‘em in a tutu though. Just you wait and see.”
5. When she was feeling down about the “Food Network Star” competition midway through, Aarti received a colorful (literally) letter from a 7-year-old fan named Danielle, who had seen Aarti’s YouTube channel and loved it. She even drew a portrait of Aarti, who says she was pulled out of her dark mood by the child.