January 12, 2010 11:00 AM

Robert Pitts/Landov

Top Chef judge Padma Lakshmi showed off her curves Saturday evening at the 9th Annual New York Times Arts & Leisure Weekend, held at The Times Center in Manhattan.

The mom-to-be is on medical bedrest for the remainder of her pregnancy, but her doctor allowed her one exception to attend the event.

Meanwhile, production on season 7 of Top Chef has stopped until April, after the judge gives birth.

“I’m very thankful to Bravo for being supportive,” says Padma.

“They’ve been through 15 pregnancies with Heidi Klum already, so they’re pretty generous.”

After all the joy that the “wonderful creative process” of cooking has brought the former model over the years, she now hopes to produce a little Top Chef of her own.

“I would be delighted if my baby was a chef,” Padma, 39, says, “as long as she was a good one.”

— Ronke Idowu Reeves

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