Toilet paper, olive oil, canned fish and vegetables: a typical shopping list. But for photographer Tom Lakeman, these words are a work of art. In his upcoming cookbook À La Cart, Lakeman uses every ingredient—literally every single one—found on discarded shopping lists in supermarkets in a recipe. What started as a weird hobby—for years, Lakeman would buy up all the items he'd find on lists people had left behind in shopping carts—has turned into a wonderfully strange art project. The cookbook's Kickstarter, as of now, is at over $6,000 pledged of its $13,759 goal.
The book boasts quite a variety of hilarious, inedible fare. There's a veggie burger with batteries and flowers on a fruit bun, a bird feeder made from pastry and a toilet paper roll, and a soupy dessert made from juice, detergent and strawberry mousse, among others. The recipes include step-by-step instructions on how to re-create them yourself, should you ever happen to be hungry for a battery burger.
The project marks a change for Lakeman, a London-based commercial photographer who usually specializes in photographing interiors and cats and dogs. Still, it's clear to see how he brings that eye for composition to À La Cart. His chips and cigarette salad may be hilarious, but it's also a gorgeous, vibrant still life. The rat poison spaghetti and meatballs dinner is more than just a terrible meal to serve your guests; it's also a really funny image that tells a full story.