This book cover image released by Infamous Books shows
"Commissary Kitchen: My Infamous Prison Cookbook,"
By rapper Albert Johnson, better known as rapper Prodigy, and Kathy Iandoli.
The book contains prison recipes and memories of the rapper's time on the inside.
Next time you can’t figure out what to make for dinner, tell yourself: At least I’m not in prison. That’s where Mobb Deep’s Prodigy landed after a plea deal on a weapons possession charge in 2007, serving most of a 3.5-year sentence in a medium-security dorm at Mid-State Correctional Facility near Utica, N.Y., upstate. And that’s where he learned to cook, prison style. The Queens rapper, half the ’90s hardcore duo with Havoc, has written a book with journalist Kathy Iandoli called Commissary Kitchen: My Infamous Prison Cookbook. It’s out this month from Infamous, Prodigy’s own imprint at Akashic Books, based in Brooklyn where he now lives. The book is a frank, touching and funny collection of prison recipes and memories about life on the inside. Using the things available, a toaster oven and a microwave, he includes “P’s Jail Break,” with Ramen noodles and Doritos, and “Good as (expletive) Seafood,” featuring cans of calamari, octopus and peas.
More seriously, he described how scary it was to stare down lousy prison food three times a day while trying to manage sickle cell anemia, a condition he’s had since childhood.
By Leanne Italie