Listen up, Igor! Today we’re making ears! I’m afraid it’s a gory process. Our raw materials begin looking pure and clean, but by the time we’re done, our artificial ears spontaneously bleed like they’re freshly severed from one of the corpses down in the basement.
Bleeding Ear Plums
(Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian)
- 8 yellow or white fleshed plums (not red fleshed ones)
- 2 tbsp butter (or coconut oil), melted
- 4 tbsp sugar
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- pinch salt
- 4 tbsp sugar
- ½ tsp ginger powder
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- pinch salt
First, my minion, we need fire. Preheat our oven to 350F.
Now fetch me the plums. I like to use a mix of yellow and white fleshed ones while dividing the spice of life between cinnamon and a mix of ginger and cardamom. This gives us the widest range of potential skin tones so we can match them up to more bodies.
I don’t trust you with my paring knife after that last incident, so hand the plums here. Once I’ve cut them in half, you can use this spoon to rip out the stones. While you’re at it, try to remove some of the flesh nearest the stem without ripping the skin. This creates a deeper ear well, creating more of an ear’s natural backwards C shape.
Line a baking sheet with foil then top it with parchment paper. Trust me. These are about to get really sticky. The foil is to save you from cleaning baked sugar off your pan while the parchment paper gives me a built in presentation. Don’t say I never think of your needs.
Arrange the plums on the baking sheet cut side up. Use a pastry brush to paint the open wound with a generous amount of butter.
The plums have had a rough day. Lighten it up by mixing the sugar with either cinnamon and a pinch of salt or ginger, cardamom, and a pinch of salt, then treating all 16 halves to a generous sprinkle of sweetness.
They don’t look much like ears yet, but heat will soon take care of that. Bake them for 30-40 minutes, or until they’re soft all the way through when pricked with a sharp knife. The flesh will deepen in color and, best of all, the plum’s natural juices mingled with the dark skin will dribble down, creating a pan full of self-bleeding fruit ears. If they’re not bleeding enough for your taste, use that sharp knife to prick each one 1-3 times then give it a couple minutes for the trauma to set in.
Carefully lift the parchment paper off the foil and lay it on your serving dish. If the parchment paper browns around the edges while cooking, even better. This lets you present the ears in little pools of their own blood, as if they’re freshly severed. The extra bit of presentation comes in handy if you’re trying to fake a hostage situation.
For the finishing touch, grab a small spoon and gently press the stem side inwards. You want to squish it from a neat circle into a rough oval. As soon as you push the middle of the fruit inward it’ll turn into a more familiar ear-like shape. Gently squeeze the bottom to create a hint of lobe.
I bake up eight plums at a time so I’ll have plenty to choose from when assembling my anthropomorphic plant-man. You can eat the leftovers. Either pile them on some fresh cream you whipped with a dash of vanilla and salt or, if you’re not worried about gluten, tuck them into some puff pastry for a fast and easy fruit tart.
- Substitute 4 tbsp honey or agave syrup for the white sugar
- Instead of sprinkling sugar on top, carefully drizzle half the honey on your fruit before baking then top it with either a sprinkle of cinnamon or a sprinkle of ginger and cardamom.
- As soon as you take the fruit out of the oven, use the back of a spoon to smear any lumpy bits of spice over the entire ear then top with an optional fresh drizzle of more honey.
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