Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Halloween Apple Shrunken Heads

A few years ago we talked about apple shrunken heads for Halloween, we wish to reprint in case you missed it.

Start by peeling large apples and then coating them in the lemon juice and salt mixture. This helps reduce the browning of the apple. 
Using a knife carve out a face with eyes and nose. Keep it simple, a holes for the eyes and nose and mouth.  

With the paring knife, carve exaggerated facial features, such as deep-set eyes and crooked, gnarling mouths. Start by making basic outline cuts and then just gouge the pieces out–and fortunately, the less pretty it is, the better it looks at the end!

It's time to "pickle" your apple.
Immerse it in a solution of  ½ cup of salt mixed with about 4-6 cups of water.

Adding 2 or 3 tablespoons of lemon juice will keep it from oxidizing.
Let it soak for 24 hours. 
It’s important to leave them in long enough, or they won’t preserve as well, mold is not the look we’re going for here!
If you live where it's humid,  your apple shrunken head may tends to rot instead of drying, so let's move things up a bit by placing it on the center rack of a warm oven 200 degrees, until dry.
Dry the apple in the oven at the lowest heat for around 4 hours.
After drying in the oven, put in a cool, dry place for a few days to continue the drying process.
As the moisture evaporates, the apple will shrink and turn brown.

For some heads try using rice (teeth) or staples, this make it look like they were stitched, weren't shrunken heads mouths generally stitched up? Otherwise, we like left gaping mouths look as well. 

We will not be held responsible for anyone with homicidal  tendencies.  Shrink only apples, never another person's head.  Use good judgment!