Diana Penty was sitting in her hotel room, waiting for her flight to Mumbai, when we spoke to her over the phone. What we still can’t get out of our mind is the cheerful laughter she greeted us with before we got her to share her food secrets. We tossed a bunch of food-related questions at the actress, who we recently saw shaking a leg in Badshah's latest release Sheher Ki Ladki (Khandaani Shafakhana), and here’s what happened.
Born and brought up in Mumbai, you will be surprised to know, Diana’s love and passion for food started in college. In fact, during her childhood, she claims to be a kiddo who had to be force-fed. But ever since her tryst with food began, the model-turned-actor has not stopped gorging on chocolate and chips—and we’re so glad since it makes her so relatable!
I don’t believe in dieting. Honestly, I don’t have the willpower to diet because I’m too much of a foodie. I’m passionate about food. I’ve never stopped myself from eating something I like or starved myself. If it's a well-balanced diet, I think it is healthy. These trending diets seem very extreme to me. It’s a bit shocking for the body. And, in the long run, I feel it is just better to eat right. Although I try to be healthy as much as I can, I have many cheat meals or cheat days. So I try to compensate for those meals by working out.
To diet or not to diet?
Also Read: The Diary of a Celebrity Fitness Trainer
What my daily meals look like
Breakfast: I start my day with some eggs and toast and follow it up with a bowl of fresh fruits just before lunch. It’s like a snack between breakfast and lunch.
Lunch: Lunch is simple rice, dal, a bowl of vegetables and some proteins such as soy nuggets or paneer. I am a huge rice-eater. If I don’t eat rice, I feel like I have not eaten at all. But I try to at least opt for brown or red rice. A few months ago, I had substituted rice with quinoa completely, but now I’m back to rice. Currently, I’m eating red rice.
Also Read: Is brown rice really better than white rice?
:This meal is usually light—salad, four chapatis and some protein.
Snack attack:I’ve discovered that the perfect snack for me is makhana (fox nuts). It is not just healthy but tasty too. But I don’t go for the packaged ones that you get at supermarkets. My mom buys the plain makhana and we lightly roast it on a tawa with some haldi, salt and chilli powder. Just before eating, I add a dash of lemon juice and some chopped coriander leaves on it – basically, make a chaat.
Weakness:Chocolate and potato chips are my weakness! I crave for these two things all the time and can eat it at any time of the day. When it comes to chocolate, I love it in all forms, be it bars or pastries. My favourite is Dutch Truffle cake.
: I love South Indian food, especially dosa! I feel like I can eat dosa every day of my life and not get tired of it. Sometimes, I think I was a South Indian in my past life. Coming back to dosa, I prefer the plain sada dosa but it shouldn’t be too crispy. I like my dosas soft with a dollop of butter.
Ghar ka khana: My lunch is my comfort food – dal, chawal, veggies and chicken curry. Oh, I love bhindi too!
Favourite restaurants:I have many favourite restaurants in Mumbai. But if I had to pick, it would definitely be Thai Pavilion at Vivanta by Taj. Their green curry and steam John Dory with lemon garlic sauce are the best. Next is Swati Snacks for their hygienic street food options. On days when I’m craving Parsi food in Mumbai, I prefer either Britannia & Co at Ballard Estate or Jimmy Boy at Horniman Circle.
Also Read: Rasika Dugal is a fan of John Dory too!
Childhood memories of food:Quite ironically, I was not a foodie at all in my childhood. In fact, I always had to be force fed. But my dad was always a foodie. I think it is his Parsi genes which I eventually caught on to in my college days. That’s the point when I discovered my passion for food which I didn’t have during childhood.
Last meal on earth:A decadent chocolate truffle cake or a chocolate fondant with a gooey filling. If I get to eat one of these as my last meal, I would go a happy person!
Want more? Click on the tags below for more videos and stories