À La Cart: Gourmet Concoctions by Dalstoners
Walking around East London, and Dalston especially, there is a unique sense of character and charisma that cannot be matched. The characters of Dalston, the friendliness and unfriendliness, the funniness and the fright, and the distinct venders around the area are what make Dalston so special.
One man, a Dalston Local, has found his own way around the joint: cooking; but this is not traditional mise en place, sautéing 'stravaganza. No, Tom Lakeman has decided to write a cookbook, comprised of shopping lists that Dalstoners have abandoned on the streets or in shopping baskets.
The cookbook, A La Cart, features recipes in which all ingredients on the shopping list have to be used. You need some bleach and some gin for later? Cool, a bleach cocktail it is.
Tom Lakeman has collected these recipes over the course of eight years to build this marvellous project.
"I started going into supermarkets just to look inside the baskets and trolleys for people's abandoned shopping lists! It became bit of an obsession... and it still is."
The Silk Cut Salad
He had collected nearly 200 lists before he thought of curating them into a book. Aiming to do the project as much outrageous justice as he could, he decided they should form a cookbook. He set terms for each recipe and indicated that all ingredients must be used in the end. Ingredients that had been crossed through weren't allowed to be used.
Japanese Cotton Noodles
The Catfood Cupcake
It was when he started working with Catarina, an artist and stylist based out of Milan, did he manage to present the dishes in a gastronomically pleasing sort. The team had created inedible, lethal combinations that were stunning and curated. The aim of the project: to get people to double-take what they're actually looking at. We'd say they've done a pretty wonderful job at accomplishing this. The 9 Volt Burger
Maki Toilet Rolls
Tom Lakeman has redefined what it means to make food into art. His idea is on KickStarter and if successful, will be published my a Milanese publishing company itsallgood. It will also contain an essay from Sam Bompus of Bompus and Parr, the culinary geniuses who have brought multi-sensory fireworks, alcoholic architecture, and an expertly made jelly to life.
The Bompus and Parr team aim to generate projects for people who wants "emotionally compelling or inspiring experiences;" and what better project to back than Lakeman's provocative cookbook.
For all of you that are curious of catnip cupcakes, you can support a local project and a soon to be worldwide phenomenon at Tom's KickStarter. We know what we'll be asking for for Christmas...