Prodigy’s prison cookbook seemed like a godsend for inmates around the country. The 118-page book, co-written by journalist Kathy Iandoli, offered easy recipes intended to make standard jailhouse food more palatable. But it appears some West Coast prisoners will no longer get to enjoy its contents.
According to TMZ, the publication, titled Commissary Kitchen: My Infamous Prison Cookbook, has been banned by California prisons due to its recipe for homemade alcohol, aka hooch. The Mobb Deep rapper went to social media to announce the ban, insisting it was “great news for” him.
In a letter posted to Prodigy’s Instagram page, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation presents their reasoning behind the ban, stating “The publication contains information and instructions on how to produce inmate manufactured alcohol,” which, of course, doesn’t fly.
Prodigy caught up with TMZ Live to discuss the book and the inspiration behind it. He said the featured recipes provided healthy alternatives and, as a result, helped him with his sickle cell. He also mentioned the book wasn’t strictly for prisoners; college students who lacked equipment or a range of ingredients could also benefit from the recipes. You can check out the full interview above.
Shortly after the CDCR sent out the letter, co-author Iandoli shared a response.
“We put a lot of great information in Commissary Kitchen and have expanded upon that info during our College Tour,” she told HipHopDX, an online publication she previously worked for. “The fact that California prisons have banned this valuable information over an alcohol recipe that most inmates are already aware of feels both contrived and indicative of the fact that maybe the rest of the book is what they’re concealing. Hopefully, this information will find its way to the right people since keeping inmates healthy was our mission. The Hooch recipe was really for historical context.”