A friend wanted something Lovecraftian for his birthday, but I was having a hard time finding anything in my budget. Finger tentacles? Pirated Hentai DVD’s? A homeless guy dressed in a century old thrift store suit burbling about his visions?
No. Those were too cliche. I needed something special. Something visionary. Something for under $10.
That night, I drank too much wine. I read the wrong books. Sure, that’s a normal Tuesday here in the lair, but this time, I had a vision. Instead of a paltry cash based present, I could use my powers for evil and transform my internet famous Alien Xenomorph Eggs into something far more disturbing – cuddly chibi Cthulhu rolls.
Admit it. They’re adorkable. You know that after one look into those cold, dead blueberry eyes you’re already fantasizing about those tentacles in your mouth.
Cthulhu Chibi Pretzel Rolls
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup whole milk
1 tbsp active dry yeast
1 tbsp white sugar
3 tbsp packed light brown sugar
2 tbsp melted butter
1 tsp table salt
1 tsp green food coloring
3 cups scalding warm water
1/3 cup baking soda
2 tbsp kosher salt or coarse pretzel salt
¼ cup blueberries
Warm your milk to the temperature of fresh blood. Sprinkle it with the seeds of sleeping giants that lay within each granule of yeast. Bury those seeds beneath a tablespoon of white sugar. Now use a whisk to beat the slumbering yeast until it dissolves into a paste. Only through destruction can it recall its true form.
Wait ten minutes. Upon your return, the yeast should have bloomed like a pustulent sore. Drown the life you’ve resurrected in a filthy sea of green food coloring, salt, brown sugar, and the nascent potential of one egg. Mix until the individuality is stripped from each thing and you’re left with a single terrified mass. Soothe it with one cup of flour, then add in the tortuous hot fat of the butter before smothering it under the rest of the flour.
Attach a dough hook to your stand mixer and let it spend the next 6-8 minutes tearing and reshaping the fleshy mass into a new, monstrous form. When you have achieved a deep green dough, remove the hook. Use a clean kitchen towel to cloak the dough in darkness and let it tremble alone in the humid, quiet black for the next hour.
When you return, the the fear within your mixing bowl will have grown so violently that your once tepid mass of dough has doubled in size. A single punch will deflate it back to mere mortal proportions. It’s not ready for greatness. Not yet.
Flatten the dough before cutting it into a dozen roughly equal pieces.
Now mix your baking soda and scalding hot water until they form a cloudy morass. Grab your first piece of dough. Pinch the ends together underneath until you form a taut ball with one scarred and malformed end. Use your hands to push that roundness into an elongated oval, reminiscent of the dark one’s mighty head.
Let a slotted spoon act as the bars on your dough’s inescapable cage as you drown it in the baking soda water. For the next minute, submerge it over and again, as though testing a woman for witchcraft.
When it emerges from it’s swampy bath, take a pair of clean kitchen shears and snip once, forcefully, from the chin upwards. A single tentacle will appear. No. That’s not right. You remember that mouth as mighty with power. Cut again. Keep cutting until the face of your nightmares emerges.
You can’t leave him blind. Two more snips above the writhing mouth and suddenly he has eye sockets. Fill them with fresh blueberries.
Reverently lay the resurrected elder god on a greased cookie sheet. Repeat the process until the terrible chanting stops beating at your eardrums, or until you run out of dough, whichever comes first.
Let the eldrich doughy images rise for the next 45 minutes while you scrub and scrub the uncleanliness from your hands. How could green dough bury itself so far up your cuticles? It’s not under your skin, is it? Surely not. Just keep scrubbing.
Just before baking, sprinkle each face with a generous amount of kosher or pretzel salt to give it the mottled texture of an angry demon. Don’t look into the eyes. Keep your hands steady as you put the baking sheets in the oven. Walk away for 12-14 minutes. The air will change subtly around you, taking on a moister, yeastier, earthier scent that confirms something unspeakable is happening inside your oven.
They shall emerge angry and hungry, and oh, gosh. Adorable.
Look at those wee little tentacles! When they collect in a writhing mass of fear crazed hunger, they’re even cuter. Maybe something is wrong with you. Perhaps your nurturing instincts have been so bent by madness that you want to cuddle anything with a hungry, tentacle filled maw.
Alright, Lovecraft fans. Let’s see your pictures of these from conventions. Tell the girls you made them with heart. Well, not real hearts. Probably. The voices didn’t say anything about fillings. Send me your pictures of cosplayers posing with your widdle elder gods and I’ll put them into a gallery of disturbingly tasty goodness.