Eat Ink: Recipes. Stories. Tattoos.
01:12 PM
My two great passions, food and tattoos, are the focus of the book Eat Ink, a fantastic collection of stories from top tattooed chefs across the country as well as their signature recipes. The only way this could make me happier is if George Clooney whispered the ingredients in my ear.

Eat Ink is a joint project by author Birk O'Halloran & photographer Daniel Luke Holton, who explore the connections between tattoo and kitchen culture, from food-inspired tattoos to the stories behind them. For example, when Ed Witt, of 8407 Kitchen Bar in Silver Spring, MD, talks about giving his tattooer artistic freedom in creating his body suit, he draws these parallels with his own work:  "I think the whole thing is of the same mentality. Chefs have this at a certain point. If you sit there and you aren't picky, you'll eat better. If you sit there and you trust an artist that is tattooing you, you'll end up with a better tattoo."

The 304-page book, with nearly 200 photos, features 60 chefs, including James Beard Award winners, Top Chef competitors, Food Network stars and more. Some of the more notable chefs are Duff Goldman, Rick Tramanto, Marc Forgione, Seamus Mullen, Mike Isabella, Justin Warner, Andy Ricker and Dominque Crenn.

The book is divided into food categories:  Hoofed, Finned, Winged, Rooted, and Sugar. It also includes some vegan recipes, so there's something for everyone. While not all the tattoos shown are exceptional, the recipes certainly are. I've included one below from Lisa Higgins, Sweetpea Baking Co., Portland, Oregon.

You can buy a signed copy of Eat Ink here or on Amazon.
Vanilla Cinnamon Coffee Cake
Yields 4 (4") coffee cakes, ramekin-size, or 1 (9") coffee cake

For Batter: Combine dry ingredients (including sugar) and margarine in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment and mix until margarine is in pea-size chunks. Add wet ingredients and mix until a batter is formed, about 30 seconds.

Ingredients for batter: 2 cups all-purpose flour; 3/4 cup sugar; 1 teaspoon flaxseed meal; 2 teaspoons baking powder; 1/2 teaspoon salt; 1/4 cup vegan margarine, slightly softened; 2 teaspoons vanilla; 1 cup soymilk; and 1/4 cup water.

For Cinnamon Filling: In a small bowl, mix all ingredients until the mixture resembles wet sand.

Ingredients for cinnamon filling: 1 tablespoon vegan margarine, melted; 3/4 cup brown sugar; 1/4 cup sugar; and 2 teaspoons cinnamon.

For Streusel Topping: In a small bowl, combine all ingredients. With a pastry blender or fork, mash the margarine into the flour and sugar until small balls of dough begin to form.

Ingredients for streusel topping: 1/2 cup vegan margarine; 1 cup all-purpose flour; and 1/2 cup sugar.

For Powdered Sugar Glaze: In a small bowl, whisk powdered sugar with 2 teaspoons of water, adding more water by drops as needed until the mixture is a thick, pourable consistency.

Ingredients for powdered sugar glaze: 1/2 cup powdered sugar; 2 teaspoons water, plus more if needed.

To Complete: Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9" round cake pan, or 8" square baking dish. Spread half of the Batter into the bottom of the pan with a spatula; then spread a layer of Cinnamon Filling 1/3 to 1/2 cup) on top. Place small dollops of the remaining Batter over the Cinnamon Filling and spread carefully with a spatula. Cover the top of the Batter with the Streusel Topping and add any extra Cinnamon Filling if desired. Bake uncovered for 30 to 35 minutes (25 minutes for the 4" ramekin size), until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes, drizzle with Powdered Sugar Glaze, and serve warm. Store in a covered container up to 3 days; warm in oven if desired.

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