Artist’s Palate: Katharina Grosse’s squid ink pasta

Katharina Grosse squid ink pasta
(Image credit: Philippe Fragnière)

One beautiful evening in Venice, German artist Katharina Grosse came across a small restaurant called Alla Vedova (at the widow’s). Thinking immediately of Emilio Vedova, the late Venetian painter who had seen abstraction as a gateway to political freedom, Grosse imagined being invited to his table. ‘We had a lot of Venetian specialities that night, but nothing was like the dark purple-black inky, velvety linguine.’ The aftermath bore a delightful resemblance to Vedova’s work – energetic, expressive brushstrokes on largely monochrome canvases. The linguine ‘left traces everywhere on the plate, the paper tablecloth, my tongue and my teeth,’ recalls Grosse. ‘Eating squid ink pasta is as if biting into the sea at night.’


3 free-range egg yolks
2 free-range eggs
3 sachets squid ink
250g/9oz ‘00’ flour

For the lobster and chilli topping:
2 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
4 spring onions, finely sliced
1 red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
2cm/1in fresh ginger, finely chopped
200g/7oz lobster meat
25ml/11fl oz white wine
1 tbsp chopped flatleaf parsley
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil


For the squid ink pasta, whisk the egg yolks, whole eggs and squid ink in a bowl to combine.

Place the flour in a food processor and, with the motor running, add the liquid until it forms a dough.

Remove from the processor and knead gently to bring the dough together. Wrap the dough in cling film and set aside in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Roll out the rested pasta dough through a pasta machine, gradually reducing the thickness until it is rolled to the thinnest setting. Then cut into the shape of your choice (linguine and spaghetti work well).

For the lobster and chilli topping, heat a frying pan over a medium heat and add the oil. Once hot, add the garlic, spring onions, chilli and ginger and gently fry for about a minute, without browning.

Add the lobster and heat through. Add the white wine and simmer until a volume of the liquid is reduced by half.

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil and drop in the pasta. Cook for 1-2 minutes, then drain and add to the lobster mixture. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Serve immediately in shallow pasta bowls, topped with the chopped parsley and basil.

As originally featured in the December 2018 issue of Wallpaper* (W*237)

For more information, visit Katharina Grosse’s website

TF Chan is a former editor of Wallpaper* (2020-23), where he was responsible for the monthly print magazine, planning, commissioning, editing and writing long-lead content across all pillars. He also played a leading role in multi-channel editorial franchises, such as Wallpaper’s annual Design Awards, Guest Editor takeovers and Next Generation series. He aims to create world-class, visually-driven content while championing diversity, international representation and social impact. TF joined Wallpaper* as an intern in January 2013, and served as its commissioning editor from 2017-20, winning a 30 under 30 New Talent Award from the Professional Publishers’ Association. Born and raised in Hong Kong, he holds an undergraduate degree in history from Princeton University.