There is perhaps no neighborhood more emblematic of the changing face of Manhattan than the East Village. The tattoo parlors on St. Marks have morphed into Chipotles; the walk-up tenements demolished in favor of glass-walled condo buildings. The Bowery sits in the shadow of a gleaming, three-story Whole Foods. Even the iconic punk-rock club CBGB is now a designer clothing store.

But amid the artisan bakeries and bespoke haberdasheries, there’s at least one vestige of the old neighborhood left, and, according to chef Gabrielle Hamilton, it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

“I’ve had the lease for fifteen years,” she says of her legendary restaurant, Prune, “And I’ve got it for fifteen more. So all these new folks better get used to it.”

Judging from the weekend brunch crowd, they already are. On the season’s first chilly Sunday, they’re spilling out on the sidewalks, waiting upwards of two hours for one of Prune’s signature Bloody Marys (there are a dozen on the menu), a plate of Eggs Benedict, a giant Dutch pancake with sour cream and blueberries.

But for the first time in the restaurant’s history, those customers will have another option — creating a Prune brunch, dinner, or cocktail hour in their own home kitchen. After 15 years, Hamilton is releasing her first cookbook, Prune, out from Random House on November 4. And in what should come as a surprise to no one, it packs a punch.

“We could have done this a long time ago,” Hamilton says. “We basically started getting offers when we opened the restaurant, which didn’t make any sense to me because we didn’t know what we were then. I wouldn’t have been able to make any sort of contribution to the cookbook world then.”

Over time, as she gained a loyal following, and went from a self-taught cook to a James Beard award winner, that changed. “People have asked us for a lot of recipes over the years. Now I see that I have something to offer them, it’s my pleasure to provide it.”

We’re talking in Prune’s basement kitchen, perched on bright fuchsia stools at the stainless steel counter. Next to us, a line cook trims her way through a hotel pan full of mushrooms. The scent of simmering stock lingers in the air.

The book, which Hamilton plucks off a shelf in the kitchen, is massive (“That’s what we get for waiting 15 years,” she says, “250 goddamn recipes”) and covered in the same fuchscia as our stools. It’s brand new, not yet on sale, but her copy already looks well-loved. She pulls off the pink elastic page marker — inspired by the Moleskin notebooks she’s been using since she was a kid — and starts thumbing through the photographs.

“I didn’t let him style anything, or use any props,” Hamilton says of photographer Eric Wolfinger. “I didn’t want the book to be food porn. This is about the reality of Prune. What you see is what you get.”

It’s a philosophy that extends beyond the photography. The book is meant to replicate Prune’s kitchen manuals, Hamilton says, gesturing towards a pile of notebooks in the corner, and in accordance, she writes to her readers as if they’re working next to her in the kitchen. (“Please do not ‘improve’ the dish by using our homemade pasta sheets or our homemade beef broth,” she warns in a typical annotation under a recipe, “Always use wonton skins and College Inn.” Or, in a particularly amusing one, “If the health department walks in, take the Serrano off the carving stand and throw in the oven.”)

“It became clear as I was writing down the recipes that I work in a restaurant, and I work with cooks, and it was going to be a real lie if I started to write to the home cook,” she says.

That isn’t to say that she doesn’t intend for home cooks to use her book. “I think the novice home cook will be relieved by how much they can make,” she says. “ And the advanced home cook with all the fancy equipment and sous vide machines can probably make most of it better than I can.”

Rather, it means that she wasn’t going to dumb down her technique, or the way she thinks or talks about food. Hamilton likens the process of translating the recipes from her binders to the cookbook to writing a play. Just as a character can’t break down the fourth wall and give the audience all the context they’d need to understand their dialogue, she says, “I had to make sure that you, who don’t work here, understand everything that we do to make Prune what it is.”

The result is a collection of prose that feels oddly poetic, definitely hilarious, and often a little bit terrifying (“Don’t use a mandolin,” she warns, “Keep up your knife skills!!”) This is no accident. Words are important to Hamilton, who has an MFA from the University of Michigan and a lyrical, much-revered memoir, 2011’s Blood, Bones, and Butter. “I was relieved to find that a cookbook is not without opportunities for language,” she says.

And yet, given her background, the book is surprisingly sparse. There’s no prologue, no headnotes, no personal stories attached to the recipes. “I’ve already written my memoir,” she says, “So, if you’ve read the memoir, you know that I started eating sardines and Triscuits when I was thirteen and living alone and scrounging through my mother’s cabinet. That’s the first recipe in the cookbook. They didn’t start out as companion books. But when I started writing I realized that it was inevitable. The restaurant is my life. The food we cook is the food of my lifetime. How it could be anything else?”