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Tattoo art and vegan recipes collide in one awesome cookbook

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Vegan home cooking just got a little more badass.

East Bay Express reports that Berkeley-based tattoo artist Ceciliia Granata has released an illustrated vegan cookbook. The incredibly named “Mama Tried: Traditional Italian Cooking for the Screwed, Crude, Vegan, and Tattooed,” is a collection of veganized Italian recipes paired with badass flash tattoo style artwork, that’s probably going to convince a few more vegans to brave a tattoo.

Granata, a vegan long before she was a tattoo artist, explained in an interview that back in 2005, it seemed like she was the only vegan in Milan. Even with basic staples like soy milk hard to find, the lessons passed on to her by her Mama and Nonna made her transition to veganism easy. This cookbook is equal parts a love letter to veganism, and to that Italian home cooking school her and so many other Italian’s grew up in.

This book also came in to being when Granata recognized the connection between her two passions; food and tattoo artwork. Working at Sacred Rose Tattoo in Albany, she has carved out a bit of a niche for herself, getting a sizeable vegan fanbase. Many of the vegan-themed tattoos she’s designed and inked are featured in the book, including a cereal eating tiger that wants you to “eat like you give a damn.”  She believes the fun and whimsy of her illustrations ease some of the “heaviness” that’s so often associated with veganism.

There are over one hundred Italian home-cooking recipes to crush on in the book, many of which are loving vegan imitations/ She tackles the vegan cheese challenge, has a chapter on aphrodisiac foods, and says the saffron-tinged risotto alla Milanese dish reminds her of her childhood most. Laid out alphabetically and spanning many categories, the East Bay Express author says it reads like a really rad children’s picture book. With horror movies, skateboard culture, Renaissance paintings, Hindu iconography, and Mexican folk art as inspirations for her artwork, it does double duty as a cookbook and a great piece of art to leave out on your table.

I’m not sure which is more dangerous, being inspired to make incredibly indulgent Italian pasta dishes more often, or looking for the best spot to tattoo “Praise Seitan” on.

Mama Tried: Traditional Italian Cooking for the Screwed, Crude, Vegan, and Tattooed from Microcosm Publishing on Vimeo.

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