The Surprising Connection Lidia Bastianich Has To Christopher Walken

Talk about a sweet bond. You might think that Lidia Bastianich, renowned celebrity chef, restaurateur, and cookbook author, has little in common with Oscar Award-winning actor and famed portrayer of often-disturbed characters Christopher Walken (via IMDb). But think again: The pair has a connection that goes all the way back to their early years.

According to Grub Street, Bastianich and her family landed in Astoria, New York after fleeing Italy as refugees. And, in a sweet twist of fate, she and her mother got jobs at Walken's Bakery after Bastianich, who was just 14-years-old at the time, lied about her age. In a conversation between the old friends on the "Leonard Lopate Show," Bastianich recalled how she first got the job and fondly reminisced about working at the bakery.

"I came in 1958 as an immigrant and started, of course, going to school, but to make a little extra money, I wanted to work on weekends and Walken's Bakery was right across the street ... So, I went in, because, you know, I loved food; I always loved food, so I sort of gravitated. And sweets, of course, as a young girl, I loved ... I [worked] as a sales girl, and then I got into the back. ... It's great memories," Bastianich said.

Lidia Bastianich and Christopher Walken's friendship is as nice as pie

Naturally, Walken also worked at the family bakery. He was a delivery person, driving cakes around town and distributing them to customers. According to Grub Street, during the "Leonard Lopate Show" episode, Walken looked back on the time he lost six wedding cakes to the floor of his car after slamming on the brakes.

Delightfully, Bastianich and Walken have maintained their friendship over the years and are still close today. On an episode of Bastianich's PBS show, "Lidia Celebrates America," the pair was seen preparing a scallop dish with secret orange and garlic sauce — a dish Bastianich calls "Scallops A La Walkem" (via PBS So Cal). While they composed the meal, Bastianich leaned in to ask about the actor's ambitions when it comes to cooking and the food industry.

"Do you ever consider cooking as a profession?" Bastianich asked. "Well, yYou know, I think that it would probably be — you know, actors, they play golf, they paint, they skydive ... But I think to have a restaurant might be very... a lot of fun," Walken responded. In turn, Bastianich told her friend, "I love having you in my kitchen. [It's] like old times."