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Beth Jackson Klosterboer

9 Gross and Gruesome Goodies for Your Halloween Party

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Beth Jackson Klosterboer

The treats in this list are all totally edible, despite their appearance. They were designed mostly for Halloween parties, but if you are planning a get-together for the premiere of the new season of The Walking Dead this weekend, these offerings will fit the theme perfectly. The foods are arranged in order of least to most gross, so you can stop whenever you start to become queasy.

1. Sweet Cookies and Cream Cheese Ball Rat

This sculpture of a rat is made from cream cheese and cookies, for a sweet spread at your party. Roll the body in crushed cookies to give him fur, and trim with pink cream cheese frosting for the details. You find complete instructions at Hungry Happenings.

2. Anatomically Correct Chocolates

Visual Anatomy Limited offers medical illustrations and chocolate. While those two businesses don't appear to really mesh, the chocolates come in the shapes of bodily organs. You can get chocolate brains, hearts, livers, colons, ears, eyes, skulls, pancreases, kidneys, or other organs, in small or large sizes, or in assorted gift boxes. Some are even available on a stick!

3. Demonic Deviled Eggs

Let's take a little detour on the subject of deviled eggs. The term "deviled" means "spiced" eggs, which in modern times is achieved with mustard, pickles, and paprika -or other spices if you prefer. But they still have a devilish name, and they somewhat resemble eyeballs, so they fit in well with Halloween feasts. You can make them seasonal but innocuous by dressing them up as little pumpkins. Or you can go all out to make your eggs resemble the evil Eye of Sauron, like the egg pictured here. The look is dependent on food coloring and black olives.

Or you can try to hit a sweet spot in between innocent and frightening, with deviled eggs covered in spiders made from black olives.

4. Pizza Pie-eye

Beth Jackson Klosterboer at Hungry Happenings had a party once in which every treat resembled an eyeball! The main dish was an eyeball pizza, made with black and green olives arranged on a background of cheese. There were also three kinds of dip and meatballs that all resembled eyes.

5. Brains in a Jar Cupcakes

This dessert looks creepy, but it's actually delicious cake with brain-shaped frosting and a bit of raspberry jelly for blood, all stuffed on a jar. The instructions for making your own are at Living Locurto. The website has kindly included printable labels for your jars!

6. Sweet or Savory Specimen Jars

Photograph by Flickr user Windell Oskay.

These specimens in jars look pretty nasty, and the labels make them seem even worse. But believe it or not, they are all not only edible, but tasty! They contain unfamiliar fruits (lychees, jackfruit, tapioca), or other foods like sausages cut into odd shapes. The sweet treats are packed in syrup, and the savory items can be displayed in chicken broth. Your Halloween guests will be delighted, if they can get over the willies and try them out. Get the instructions at Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories.

7. Zombie Brains Jello Shots

When you bite open these little brains, you'll find they are filled with delicious but frighteningly red raspberry sauce! If you serve a full platter of them, be sure to cut one open to show your guests what they are in for. The presentation makes all the difference! The gelatin is flavored with hazelnut and raspberry liqueur in addition to vodka, which both lend a bit of authentic coloring to the condensed milk-colored gelatin. The raspberry filling can be homemade, as the recipe is included, or you can take the shortcut of using raspberry pie filling.

A little raspberry syrup drizzled over the top completes the look. Just pretend you are a zombie, for which brain-eating comes naturally. These will work for your premiere party for The Walking Dead next weekend, or for any Halloween party. The complete instructions are at WikiHow.

8. The Noshing Dead: Bloody Banana Guts

These overripe bananas look thoroughly disgusting covered in brown sugar and food coloring, but they're tasty when spread on a graham cracker or cookie! This recipe was inspired by The Walking Dead visuals, but you don't need to think about that while you're eating. The recipe at Kitchen Overlord comes with a cute zombie story, too.

9. The Grossest Cupcake Ever

The cupcake you see here will be sold at the Eat Your Heart Out 2013 pop-up cake shop in London, England, open October 25-27. Food artists will be offering the world's most gruesome and delicious treats. These cupcakes are made by Twisted Fondant, a macabre, x-rated division of Fantasy Fondant. What makes them so gruesome?

They are called Mango Fly Larva Cupcakes. They are served with a glove and a pair of tweezers so you can do the deed, as shown in this photo series, which may be disturbing. Just keep reminding yourself that no matter what it looks like, this is all delicious cake and edible icing.

If you've made it this far, you may also want to check out our previous recipe roundups:
Gruesome Halloween Party Food
Creepy Halloween Party Food
Ten Terrific or Terrifying Treats for Halloween
9 Spooky Halloween Party Treats

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Animals
Fisherman Catches Rare Blue Lobster, Donates It to Science
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FRED TANNEAU/AFP/Getty Images

Live lobsters caught off the New England coast are typically brown, olive-green, or gray—which is why one New Hampshire fisherman was stunned when he snagged a blue one in mid-July.

As The Independent reports, Greg Ward, from Rye, New Hampshire, discovered the unusual lobster while examining his catch near the New Hampshire-Maine border. Ward initially thought the pale crustacean was an albino lobster, which some experts estimate to be a one-in-100-million discovery. However, a closer inspection revealed that the lobster's hard shell was blue and cream.

"This one was not all the way white and not all the way blue," Ward told The Portsmouth Herald. "I've never seen anything like it."

While not as rare as an albino lobster, blue lobsters are still a famously elusive catch: It's said that the odds of their occurrence are an estimated one in two million, although nobody knows the exact numbers.

Instead of eating the blue lobster, Ward decided to donate it to the Seacoast Science Center in Rye. There, it will be studied and displayed in a lobster tank with other unusually colored critters, including a second blue lobster, a bright orange lobster, and a calico-spotted lobster.

[h/t The Telegraph]

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Animals
Australian Scientists Discover First New Species of Sunfish in 125 Years
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Courtesy Murdoch University

Scientists have pinpointed a whole new species of the largest bony fish in the world, the massive sunfish, as we learned from Smithsonian magazine. It's the first new species of sunfish proposed in more than 125 years.

As the researchers report in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, the genetic differences between the newly named hoodwinker sunfish (Mola tecta) and its other sunfish brethren was confirmed by data on 27 different samples of the species collected over the course of three years. Since sunfish are so massive—the biggest can weigh as much as 5000 pounds—they pose a challenge to preserve and store, even for museums with large research collections. Lead author Marianne Nyegaard of Murdoch University in Australia traveled thousands of miles to find and collected genetic data on sunfish stranded on beaches. At one point, she was asked if she would be bringing her own crane to collect one.

Nyegaard also went back through scientific literature dating back to the 1500s, sorting through descriptions of sea monsters and mermen to see if any of the documentation sounded like observations of the hoodwinker. "We retraced the steps of early naturalists and taxonomists to understand how such a large fish could have evaded discovery all this time," she said in a press statement. "Overall, we felt science had been repeatedly tricked by this cheeky species, which is why we named it the 'hoodwinker.'"

Japanese researchers first detected genetic differences between previously known sunfish and a new, unknown species 10 years ago, and this confirms the existence of a whole different type from species like the Mola mola or Mola ramsayi.

Mola tecta looks a little different from other sunfish, with a more slender body. As it grows, it doesn't develop the protruding snout or bumps that other sunfish exhibit. Similarly to the others, though, it can reach a length of 8 feet or more. 

Based on the stomach contents of some of the specimens studied, the hoodwinker likely feeds on salps, a jellyfish-like creature that it probably chomps on (yes, sunfish have teeth) during deep dives. The species has been found near New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, and southern Chile.

[h/t Smithsonian]

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