LAST CALL: TFN is mobbed with requests for recipe

Cement companies and strip clubs are not the only firms pitching

their brands to HBO's monster hit The Sopranos.

The Food Network (TFN) recently scored a coup when kingpin Mafia wife

Carmela Soprano whipped up a dish of 'Mario Batali's string beans with


But, as TV Guide revealed, Batali's delish dish was not due to be

unveiled until spring 2002 when the Mario Eats Italy series is


Batali has reportedly been 'besieged' with requests for the recipe and

TV Guide graciously printed it in full last week.

TFN has a long friendly relationship with HBO, pitching all sorts of

tasty tidbits, said Amy Voll, TFN's director of PR. When HBO wants a new

recipe, they are put directly in touch with Batali.

'I think it had a lot to do with the nature of the show and the fact

that Batali has a huge New York restaurant presence,' Voll


Cooking seems to be of great interest to the show's producers. The

Soprano household was recently shown watching the program of another

Food Network icon, Emeril Lagasse.

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