Knives and Needles

Where Chefs can talk tattoos and Tattooers can talk food

Archive for the month “November, 2013”

Mary of Nom Yourself

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Its rare to find a vegan chef, let alone a really good one! This is Knives and Needles first vegan chef feature, Mary of Nom Yourself! Her food looks amazing and she loves tattoos; so please read, enjoy and be inspired to step out of your animal-product box!

Molly: Tell me about yourself, please include what you are doing now

Mary: I am a 27 year old vegan cook living in NYC. I am currently developing recipes for my second cookbook that is currently untitled, and promote my first cookbook Nom Yourself – The Cookbook. I run nomyourself.com and advocate home cooking.

Molly: I always want to advocate to cook at home as well, especially these days. Have you always been vegan?

Mary: I haven’t. I actually became vegan 14 months ago while living in Baltimore, Maryland. I started teaching myself how to cook and found that adding meat and dairy to my dishes was actually taking away from the flavor of all these amazing fruits and vegetables I was buying from the farmers market. Most people find veganism through animal rights or health reasons. I found it through cooking.

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Molly: Very cool! How did you get into developing Nom Yourself?

Mary: I started posting pictures of the food I was making on my personal Instagram account. Then a friend suggested I start a website. Within a week I had a thousand followers and a new love for the internet.

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Molly: What a great idea! So on to tattoos. What was your first tattoo and what inspired you to get tattooed?

Mary: My first tattoo was a star I got when I was 16. Reading Andrew Parsons interview on Knives & Needles is making me think this is what a lot of people in our generation would answer. I wanted to get tattooed because my family did and still does mean the world to me. I wanted to make it permanent and have something that would remind me of that. So, I got the star to represent the 5 people in my family. I went to some seedy place in downtown NYC and probably used a fake ID. It was less about art and more about being a rebel child than the tattoos that came after.

Molly: Haha! Who would you want a tattoo from if you could get tattooed by anyone right now? And what would you get?

Mary: Dave Wah at Stay Humble Tattoo Company, from Baltimore. The work he does is just fascinating. I would have him do my whole fruits & vegetables sleeve. Bright, vibrant veggies. Arugala, Rainbow Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Avocados, Kale, Onions, all of it!

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Molly: Food tattoos!! Do you ever go to any tattoo conventions? If so, which ones and did you have fun?

Mary: I went to the Baltimore Tattoo Convention last year. It was a blast, but short lived. I was only there for about an hour. I’m hoping to go to the NYC Tattoo Convention in March.

Molly: Who else do you admire in the tattoo industry?

Mary: Trevor Friedrich, who did my side. A truly multi-talented human being. Ashley Thomas, from Atomic Tattoo in Austin, TX. She’s vega and rad. I’d love to sit in her chair and just shoot the shit and talk life.

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Molly: Do you own any tattoo magazines?

Mary: I don’t. Mainly because I have the worst Wanderlust. My address is ever changing. I’ll pick up Inked every once in a while.

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Molly: A girl after my own heart!  What style of tattooing do you love the most?

Mary: I love black and grey portraits. With the exception of the vibrant vegetable sleeve, I would cover my whole body with black and grey tattoos.

Molly: Any vegan tips for beginners?

Mary: Teach yourself how to cook. A lot of vegans get frustrated because its inconvenient to eat out. Teaching yourself how to cook will not only make it easier for you to transition into a vegan lifestyle, but you’ll also find yourself getting creative and you feel a sense of pride with every meal. Your kitchen becomes your art studio.

Great advice, Mary, thank you!!

Mary wanted to share a recipe with all of us today, Salted Caramel Apple Pumpkin Pie! Here is the link to the recipe on her website as well: http://www.nomyourself.com/#!salted-caramel-apple-pumpkin-pie-recipe/c1m7o

Enjoy and try it out, you just might be pleasantly surprised at how “unvegan” it tastes!

Salted Caramel Apple Pumpkin Pie

Salted Caramel Apple Pumpkin Pie

 

Pie Crust

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 Tbs. organic granulated sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup vegan margarine

2 Tbs. vegetable shortening

3 Tbs. cold water

 

Pumpkin Pie Filling

1 cup organic pumpkin pie puree

3 Tbs. all purpose flour

2 Tbs. organic light brown sugar

1 Tbs. organic granulated sugar

1/4 cup canned coconut milk

1 Tbs. vanilla extract

1 tsp. nutmeg

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

Apple Pie Filling

2 medium granny smith apples

2 medium pink lady apples

1/2 Tbs. lemon juice

1/3 cup organic brown sugar

1 1/2 Tbs. all purpose flour

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

pinch of salt

 

Salted Caramel Sauce

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

3/4 cup canned coconut milk

3 Tbs. vegan margarine

1 tsp. sea salt, coarse

Pie Crust

1) Mix flour, sugar and salt in a small bowl until well combined.

2) Add in margarine and shortening while you mix it all together with your hands. Keep kneeding until all ingredients are crumbled.

3) Slowly add cold water 1 Tbs. at a time and mix with your hands until dough is a ball.

4) Wrap the ball in saran wrap and put it in the refridgerator while you work on the pie fillings.

 Method

Pumpkin Pie Filling

1) Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl until combined.

2) Set bowl aside.

Apple Pie Filling

1) Peel, core and thinly slice apples. If you have a mandoline, use it! Thin apples make the perfect filling. Place the apples in a large bowl with the lemon juice.

2) Add brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg & salt.

3) Gently toss until apples are coated.

4) Set bowl aside.

Bring it all together

1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

2) Take pie crust out of the refrigerator and roll out onto a floured countertop with a rolling pin.

3) Once the size of the outer rim of your pie dish, place the dough in the pan. When you get the edges, make sure there is no dough hanging over, or on the sides. Keeping your crust on the inside of the pan and off the rim, keeps the crust from burning.

4) Pour pumpkin pie filling into crust and smooth out until even.

5) Neatly place apples on top of pumpkin filling.

6) Place in oven and bake for 40 minutes. (Some of you may be confused here because on my instagram video, I poured the caramel sauce in right before this step. After making it a second time, I feel the best outcome is making the sauce right before serving.)

7) Let cool overnight, or at least 5 hours.

8) Once chilled, proceed to Salted Caramel sauce directions.

Salted Caramel Sauce

1) In a non-stick skillet, combine sugar and water over medium-low heat and mix until the sugar is dissolved.

2) Increse heat and bring to a boil, without stirring.

3) Boil until the liquid is a deep amber color, 5-7 minutes.

4) Remove the sugar from the heat and carefully whisk in coconut milk, vegan margaine and salt.

5) Pour in a heat safe dish and let cool for 5-10 minutes.

6) Once cooled, top pie with your favorite ice cream (mines Vanilla!) and pour caramel sauce over it, and ENJOY!

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Thank you Mary, this looks amazing!

Don’t forget to post your finished product on instagram, facebook or twitter and tag me in it when you’re done! I’d love to see your creations and what you think. @nomyourself or @knivesandneedles !

Cheers!

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Wilhelmina

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Wilhelmina is one of our first international chefs to interviewed for knivesandneedlesblog! Thank you Wilhelmina for taking the time to share your thoughts, tattoos and yummy recipe! Read on to see what Wilhelmina has to say…
Molly: So tell us a bit about yourself
Wilhelmina: My name is Wilhelmina, I’m 23 years old and live in Leiden, Holland. Since February I’m working as garde manger at the Hilton Garden Inn in Leiden/Oegstgeest, Holland.
M: I love Holland! The food there is so great, what are some of your favorite things to cook?
W: My favorite thing to cook is without a doubt cheesecake. I love, love, love cheesecake! But I don’t bake them. Just let them stiffen up in the fridge. In every flavor you can imagine.
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M: who doesn’t love cheesecake! So on to tattoos. When did you get your first tattoo and what was it?
W: I got my first tattoo when I just turned 15. I had a boyfriend [who is now my ex-husband] who had some tattoos and I really loved that kind of art. So I wanted something too. My mom didn’t agree, but when I said I’d love to have the Chinese character for ‘Mother’ she just sighed and said ‘Okay, love you’. Two weeks later I got my first tattoo and my mom even paid for it. It’s still there in my shoulder, but now I’ve got ‘The Big Wave’ from the Japanese painter Hokusai all around it.
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M: Hokusai… yes! So do you ever go to any tattoo conventions?

W: Tattoo conventions are so awesome and I really want to go to every convention I can go to. Love to get tattooed on conventions, but also hanging out with the artist and making some new friends. Unfortunately I can not go everytime because of my work. The conventions are mostly in the weekend, and I’m working almost every weekend. On top of that I only go to Dutch conventions, and one time went to Antwerp. But I really, really want to go abroad. I would love to go to London, Paris, Rome, Munchen-Gladbach and many more.

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M: Those are some good shows! Who do you admire in the tattooing and/or culinary industries?
W: In the culinary industry I really admire Sergio Herman, Ricardo van Ede, Brandon Baltzley, Heston Blumenthal, Jamie Oliver, Roderick Rijsdam, Jean Beddington and lots more!
In the tattoo industry I really admire Gerrit Termaat, Rob Deut, Maximo Lutz,  Lyz Diephuis, Leslie Reesen, Hankey Jee, Nikko Hurtado, Ade Itameda and many more.
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M: Nice! If you could get tattooed by anyone in the world right now, who would it be and why?

W: If I could get tattooed by any tattooer in the world right now I would probably go for Ade Itameda. I have an elephant tattooed on my back and my shoulder blades and everything around the elephant are still empty. I would love for him to get that covered with his amazing dotwork.

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M: Magazines. Food or tattoos, which ones do you read?
W: I really enjoy reading, or actually just looking at the pictures, food magazines. My absolute favorite is ‘Patisserie&Desserts’. I really just love all the sweetness. Tattoo magazines, same story. Love the pictures. Sometimes I feature in ‘Tattoo Planet’, a Dutch monthly magazine.
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M: Ah so you tattoo model as well, cool! Let’s end with some advice… Any cooking advice for beginners?

W: The only cooking advice I can give is just do your own thing. Go crazy, experimenter and taste. Taste everything. Go to the basis of the food, take a trip to your local farmer. Love your food ❤

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Great advice! I always say cook with feeling too!

As with weekly tradition, Wilhelmina has given us her over-the-top Oreo cheesecake recipe! Check it out….. I promise you wont regret it!

Oreo cheesecake

Oreo Cheesecake

Crust

2 cups Oreo crumbs (from about 20 Oreos)
1/4 cup butter, melted
 Filling
24 oz (three 8-oz packages) cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
8 oz whipped cream
1 1/2 cups Oreo crumbs (from about 16 Oreos)
7-10 Oreos, chopped, optional
Instructions
1. Combine Oreo crumbs (for crust) with melted butter.
2. Press into the bottom and halfway up the sides of a 9 inch springform pan. Set in refrigerator to firm.
3. Mix cream cheese, sugar and vanilla together in a large bowl until smooth and well combined.
4. Gently stir in whipped cream.
5. Add Oreo crumbs and chopped Oreos and gently mix until well combined.
6. Pour filling into crust and smooth the top.
7. Top with additional Oreo’s, if desired.
8. Refrigerate for about 4 hours or until firm.

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Thank you Wilhelmina! Your tattoos are amazing and I want to try your cheesecake recipe like yesterday!

You can catch more of Wilhelmina on IG: @WillayWilhelmina

If you are a tattooed chef or foodie tattooer and have any recipes or food tattoos, send them to us at knivesandneedles@gmail.com or tag us on IG: @knivesandneedles – we would love to feature you!

Cheers!

Tattoo Tuesday

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Tattoo by Daniel Claessens on Ben Spangler!

Thank you Ben!! Damn, I want Ramen!!!!

Send us your food tattoos at knivesandneedles@gmail.com or tag us at @knivesandneedles

Cheers!

Andrew Parsons

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Chef Andrew Parsons has a pretty impressive job and loves tattoos. Read on and find out more on this traveling chef!

Molly: Please tell us a bit about yourself

Andrew: My name is Andrew Parsons age 25, currently working in Delhi India as the executive Chef of the Canadian High Commission. I grew up in Newfoundland Canada, where I started my cooking career as a dishwasher and then moved my way up. Moved to Toronto and worked in a few of the top restaurants then I ended up signing a contract for India, aha.

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M: Canada is awesome! How did you get into cooking?

A: As a kid I always found myself helping my grandmother in her kitchen, from helping with bread and or cookies…sometimes eating most of them, I just really enjoyed it. I worked in franchise kitchens in my teenage years. Even became a welder and tried a few different things but I always found myself back working in kitchens, enjoying the rush and the creativity, so I decided to stick with it and see where it could get me.

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M: Thats really cool. You currently live overseas, where else have you lived and worked?

A: I have lived in St. John’s, Newfoundland , Toronto and Calgary, now delhi India and I have cooked in all those cities except for Calgary!

M: Do you have a favorite place in the world to cook?

A: My favorite place in the world to cook I would probably have to say is on a beach somewhere in Newfoundland. Go out in the early morning, catch the freshest of Atlantic seafood and then setup on the beach with a cast iron and open fire and cook a delicious shore lunch with your friends.

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M: That sounds incredible! So when did you get your first tattoo?

A: I first got tattooed when I was almost 16 years old, went and got some stars on my hips and hid them from my family for about 2 years. Once my father found out he was pretty open about it, so on came the ink.

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M: Who do you admire in the culinary industry?

A: I would say right now in the culinary industry my biggest influences are probably Alex Atala, and Daniel Boulud and Grant Achatz.

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M: And who do you admire in the tattoo industry?

A: Right now in the tattoo industry I love looking at Myke Chambers work. His style is so unique and fresh, I would love to get tattooed by him.

M: What is your next tattoo?

A: My next tattoo would be to probably be to finish my stomach next time I’m in Toronto. I have been thinking a lot about my hands… But who knows.

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M: Hands… big step! Why do you think so many chefs are heavily tattooed?

A: I think that a lot of us are heavily tattooed because in general we are creative people in a whole.. And maybe due to the fact that we are always hiding in the kitchen anyways?

M: This may be redundant but if you could get tattooed by anyone in the world right now, who would it be and why?

A: Myke chambers, fresh style, unique and just a great tattoo artist.

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M: Ah yes, you did mention him! Well, do you have any cooking advice for someone trying to cook Indian cuisine?

A: If you want to cook Indian cuisine, I would suggest to watch your spices. People tend to over power the natural flavors with chili. Oh and alway cook out your spices or pastes in the oil first.

Indian food is quite unique but rustic at the same time. It’s quite the fun style of cooking to learn.

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I love cooking Indian food,  I will definitely try this amazing recipe from Andrew! I am willing to bet this is pretty authentic and will make your kitchen a high-traffic destination in your house! TRY IT……

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Curry chicken with fragrant rice pilaf

2 skinless legs. Bone out and cubed

Marinate in plain yogurt, ginger garlic paste and lemon juice.

Yellow curry powder

1 tbsp ground turmeric

1tbsp ground coriander seed

1/2 tbsp ground clove

1/2 tbsp of ground cumin

2 green chilis

Grind into paste.

1 cup julienned red onion

2tbsp tomato paste

1 cup fresh chopped tomatoes

2 tbsp of ginger garlic paste

2 sliced green chilis

1/2 cup fresh green peas

1 cup cream

1 cup water

Coriander

Heat the ginger garlic paste in the oil with the curry paste, add the chopped onions, sauté until translucent.

Add tomato paste and fresh tomatoes and simmer.

In separate pan with hot oil sear the chicken with salt and pepper.

Add water and cream to the pan and incorporate chicken and peas simmer until cooked and right consistency add a bunch of chopped coriander. Finish the gravy with fried black mustard seed if wanted around 1 tsp

Make a basmati rice pilaf with cinnamon stick and clove

Plate and garnish with fresh coriander

Thank you Andrew!!

You can catch more of Andrew at either his Istagram or website

@andrewparsonss

www.chefandrewparsons.com

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If you are a tattooed chef or foodie tattooer, we would love to feature you! Contact us at knivesandneedles@gmail.com or tag us on IG, @knivesandneedles

Cheers!

Jose Ruiz

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He may be one of the youngest chefs in San Diego, but don’t let his age fool you! Jose Ruiz is one talented chef, and he was nice enough to sit down and let us into his world for a minute! Read on…

Molly: Tell me about yourself, please include what you are doing now

Jose: I am 25 years old, Mexican-American, born and raised in San Diego, California. I am currently the Executive chef at Herringbone La Jolla and have been working in the industry for over 10 years.

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M: How did you get into cooking?

J: My family friends owned a sushi bar where I got my fist job washing dishes, from there I gradually worked my way up to prep cook, then working on the line to eventually becoming a sushi chef at the age of 17. From then on I was hooked.

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M: Who inspires you in the kitchen?

J: Im inspired by all the old grandmothers, butchers, farmers and fishermen that have taken there passion and created old traditions. These are the classic chefs who have paved the way for new innovation. I feel like with out understanding the origins of where it all started its harder to know where its all going.

M: What interested you in getting tattooed?

J: Both my father and my uncle are heavily tattooed, and I have been surrounded by that kind of lifestyle since I can remember. From cars and tattoos, to art and everything that goes along with it.

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M: What was your first tattoo?

J: My “Ditch”, a red rose with music notes and spider webs.

M: Who do you admire in the tattoo industry?

J: There are a lot of artists that I admire but someone who stands out to me is Sergio Hernandez ‘Surge’ at 7 Seas, San Diego. He is an innovator when it comes to Mexican-American art in San Diego and is one of the most all around talented people I know. Along with being an artiest he is a Jiu-jitsu champion, successful musician, amazing family man, all the while staying humble.

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M: If you could get tattooed right now, what would it be and who would do it?

J: Besides finishing a very large piece I have on my stomach, I want to get a traditional Aztec serpent and black panther on me back. Right now my main artiest is Dan Pryor at 7 Seas, we have built a great friendship and he’s an amazing artiest.

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M: Do you own any tattoo magazines and which ones?

J: No, but I flip through some while I get my hair cut.

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M: Why do you think so many chefs are heavily tattooed?

J: I think it has become less of a taboo now for chefs to be heavily tattooed, and regardless of how odd some of us might look it doesn’t say any less about our craft and what we are doing. Every one of us has a story to tell and some like myself have chosen to express that on our bodies and through our food.

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M: Do you have any cooking advice for those who don’t cook much?

J: Dont over think it!! Its just food, and its all about trial and error.

Jose also sent us one of his specialties, try it out!

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Chicken fried sweetbreads with tabasco caviar, pickled mustard seeds and whipped blue cheese.

For sweetbreads:

1 -2 veal sweetbreads

2 cup flour ap flour (dredge mix)

1 cup corn starch

1 cup corn meal

Salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, onion powder to taste ( for fry flour)

1.5 qt butter milk ( for soaking and frying)

For mustard seeds:

2 tablespoons brown mustard seeds

1 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

For Tabasco caviar:

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup Tabasco sauce

1 tablespoon agar agar

7 sheets gelatin, bloomed (softened in ice water)

1 pint very cold canola oil ( chilled in freezer for 4 hours)

For Blue cheese whipped cream:

3 cups heavy whipping cream

1 cup blue cheese crumbles

5 sheets gelatin, bloomed ( softened in ice water)

1 bowl of ice

Pickled mustard seeds:

Combine sugar, red wine vinegar and mustard seeds in a sauce pot with a pinch of salt and simmer slow until mustard seeds are tender, about 20 – 30 minutes reserve in liquid.

2 Making tabasco caviar:

Put the water and Tabasco into a sauce pot with agar agar and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in bloomed gelatin sheets. Take an eye dropper and drop Tabasco mix into the cold oil, when all Tabasco is in the oil, strain away the remain oil and you will have the caviar.

3 Blue cheese whipped cream:

Slowly heat up heavy whipping cream in a sauce pot, little by little whisk in blue cheese crumbles as soon as all the blue cheese is incorporated whisk in bloomed gelatin sheets. Remove from heat and chill in the refrigerator. As soon as it’s cooled place blue cheese heavy cream liquid into a table top mixer with whisk attachment put bowl of ice underneath the bowl to keep the bowl as cold as possible. Whisk at medium speed until it looks like whipped cream season with a pinch of salt and some cracked black pepper to taste-be careful not to over whip.

4 Veal Sweetbreads:

Take 1 quart of buttermilk and brine (soak) sweetbreads for 24 hours in refrigerator, remove from butter milk and wash off remaining butter milk under cold water. Heat up a pot of heavily salted water ( for poaching ) as soon as the pot is boiling place sweetbreads into the water and lower heat to a simmer. Depending on the size of the sweetbreads let them simmer about 15-20 minutes or until the sweetbreads have firmed up, remove from water and place into ice bath to cool (shock). Once cooled clean membrane(outer skin)and cut into large pieces and place into remaining 1/2 quart of buttermilk with a couple dashes of Tabasco and marinade.

5 Flour mixture ( dredge )

Combine flour, corn starch, corn meal, a pinch of salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, and onion powder in a bowl and mix.

To assemble and serve:

Heat fryer to 325 or a large pot with oil, dredge sweetbreads in flour mixture and redredge In buttermilk then flour mixture. Carefully place pieces in fryer. Fry until golden brown about 3-4 minutes. Carefully remove and place on paper towel. On plate place on a light bed of greens (arugula, mizuna, frisée, etc. so they don’t roll around ) with whipped blue cheese, and garnish with caviar,mustard seeds with liquid and Micros or chopped parsley.

Damn! Thank you Jose, you went all out!

Send us your food or tattoo photos, we would love to feature you!

@knivesandneedles

knivesandneedles@gmail.com

Cheers!

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