Knives and Needles

Where Chefs can talk tattoos and Tattooers can talk food

Archive for the tag “tatoo artist”

Julian Zeff


Hey Happy Monday everyone!  I have a special blog for you today, my friend Julian Zeff. He is an amazing tattooer, the sweetest guy and his positive energy lights up the room! Check out this blog and see what Julian likes to eat and cook!


My name is Julian Zeff. I am a Tattooer in Los Angeles, California. Born and raised here in LA I grew up skateboarding, surfing, bike riding and vandalizing walls or making art around the city(you can be the judge of that). Things I do besides art are travel, surf and go to the gym. Before I became a tattoo artist I was mostly focused on graffiti and canvas art.


I first noticed an interest in tattoos simply because I was surrounded by friends who were getting them. As soon as I found someone that was willing to give me my first tattoo(while I was under eighteen), I got one. From that point on I knew I wanted to engulf myself in learning how to do it and I’ve never looked back.


I started tattooing when I was in high school. Before that I had a lot of crappy jobs, mostly fast food, with the exception of delivering pizza and working in a fabric store.

The first tattoo I did was two little doves on the lower stomach area of one of my friend’s. It was terrible. I didn’t even know how to properly set up, let alone put a tattoo machine together. I was sixteen years old, trying to learn how to tattoo but due to my immaturity, and my teachers lack of experience it didn’t work out so well.


Luckily, I was able to get an apprenticeship soon after I turned eighteen. My first tattoo during my apprenticeship was a melting slice of pizza with flies above it and a bottle of booze. It was very classy. This was drawn on by everyone that I worked with at the shop on one of the guys who was teaching me. It was a terrifying experience but a good one.


I recently finished a koi fish and peony flower sleeve on a guy who is a chef. He works at a high- end restaurant in Los Angeles but I can’t remember which one. There are probably many heavily tattooed chefs because like us they are in control of their own career destiny. They are creative and artistic, and it seems to be a no brainer that they would want to express their creativity on their body.


Not too long ago I watched a documentary called, Jiro Dreams of Sushi. This sushi chef has so much passion for his craft that he dedicates his entire life to perfecting every dish he prepares. He has a specific person he buys from for each of his ingredients. A man whose job is to only pick out the very best tuna, a man whose job is to only sell the best rice and so on and so forth. From the way Jiro prepares his food, to the way he lives his life, he is an exceptional example of someone who wants nothing more than to master their craft. It is very inspiring.Image

My signature dish is a high protein, low carb turkey chili, which is great in taste and in maintaining a healthy diet. I first season a packet of ground turkey with salt, pepper, garlic powder, dill weed, cayan pepper, and rosemary.


When that’s finished cooking I mix it in a crock pot with chopped onions, 1 can of black beans, 1 can of kidney beans, and a jar of delicious pasta sauce. Then I let them all cook together for 15 minutes on medium heat, while stirring occasionally. This is great as left overs, and to bring to work with you throughout the week. Image

Julian, your chili looks healthy and mouth-watering!  Thank you for taking the time to write for knivesandnneedles!!

You can check out more of Julian at:


If you have any food tattoos, recipes or just want to be featured, IG us at @knivesandneedles or send us an email at


Cheers and enjoy!

Joey The Kid


Joey is a cool guy with a bright future. He is a young tattoo artist at Strong Tattoo in sunny San Jose but don’t let that fool you, Joey the Kid is coming up fast! Joey just graduated high school, has already been tattooing a year (I wish I‘d started cooking that early!) AND is getting ready to head off to college in the fall!

Needless to say he is one busy dude so I quickly sat down with him and picked his final-exams-ridden brain about food and what he likes to eat. Joey also gave me a couple killer recipes that I shared at the end of this blog, what a guy!

… So read on!


M: Tell me a little bit about your background.

J: So here’s a little bit about my background. I grew up and currently live in beautiful San Jose, California. Throughout most of my life I have always been intrigued by art and tattooing from being surround by the culture. Ever since I have been very grateful for the opportunities of having to meet and become friends with some really great artists at State of Grace. In 2006 my father started strong tattoo, at the time both strong tattoo and state of grace were at the same location, right next to 45’s forever. Strong didn’t get life until state of grace moved out in 2006 where it was Venjamin Jimenez and Dan Moses. Having the opportunity to become a tattoo artist I decided to take a stand and begin my tattooing career. I did my first tattoo ever on my self in August of 2012, a simple rose on my leg and since then I’ve been nonstop.

M: Right on! So how long have you been tattooing now?

J: I can say I’ve been tattooing about a year now. I’m very thankful for he opportunity of being able to be surrounded by the great artist at Strong Tattoo and for the family at State Of Grace


M: What do you usually like to cook?

J: When I cook I don’t have a wide variety of foods I make but the variety I do have is one I like a lot. Most of the time I usually will be making burritos of some sort. The types of burritos are eggs and bacon, chorizo and eggs and of course beans and cheese. I do like to make other things besides burritos like pancakes and French toast.

M: Are you a picky eater?

J: When I was younger I used to be a very picky eater; I only stuck to the same food over and over. I guess I grew out of that stage of being picky and wanted to try something new. I now try to eat whatever I can and am always looking for a good meal to eat.


M: Its good to expand your horizons! So what do you usually eat at work?

J: At work my diet isn’t exactly the best. Most of the time you will catch me eating a five-dollar Little Caesar’s Hot and Ready Pizza. I try to go out and get a sandwich but I’m always going for that pizza.

M: Haha! Do you admire any chefs?  If so, who?

J: I don’t really have any top chefs but I do love my friends and family’s meals. My grandparents are always cooking up great Mexican food that I can’t resist and my pops is in love with his new smoker and is always putting racks of ribs on the table, I can’t complainant all.


M: Do you have any advice for those future foodies out there that may have some reservations about strange foods?

J: Some advice I have for those foodies is just to eat everything and anything. There are so many different types of food out there and you don’t want to miss out on anything.

Joey’s recipes, try them out!


Recipe 1

Mint Mojito iced coffee


– Fresh mint

– 1/3 cup coffee preferably Philz Tesora

– 1/4c Creamer in Sweet Cream flavor


The directions

– Add about 10 mint leaves into the bottom of your cup and smash them with a spoon to get the mint flavor

– Add ice cubes

– Add 1/3 cup of coffee

-Add 1/4c creamer


– Now enjoy 🙂


Recipe 2

Oreo truffles


– Half a bag of Nestlé white chocolate

– About a row of Oreos

– 1/3 of plain cream cheese


The Directions

-Crush 1 row of Oreos In a zip lock Baggie until crumbles

-Mix crushed Oreos with 1/3 of cream cheese

– Roll mixed Oreos and cream cheese in small balls then put in freezer for 10 minutes

– Microwave 1/2 a bag of white chocolate in a bowl until melted

-Take Oreos out of freezer and dip them into white chocolate until they are completely covered

– Let truffles dry for 10 minutes then enjoy:)


Thank you so much, Joey, that Oreo recipe looks decadent as hell!

*If you have a recipe or food tattoo you would like to share, email us at

We would love to share you work, from the kitchen or from the studio!!

Have a great day : )

Photos courtesy of Joey the Kid

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