This is a post for my Halloween-y themed "movies" event for the online Movies & Munchies group. But it was actually inspired by a streaming television series, not a movie. And I have a funny story about how Jake and I began watching The Last of Us.
Awhile back I heard field mycologist Giuliana Furci being interviewed on NPR. She was reacting to the portrayal fungi in The Last of Us. She and the interviewer talked about fungus communicating over long distances via mycelia. It all seemed very scientific and I suggested we watch it.
Jake was shocked. "You want to watch a zombie show?" No, they were interviewing a mycologist on NPR; I think it's a serious show, I said.
Nope. I was duped! But we watched it, joking every time we settled down on the couch. "We're watching that mycologist-approved show tonight, right?"
The Last of Us is a straight zombie horror show. It follows familiar post-apocalyptic survival narratives in an alternate-reality 2003. Climate change has catalyzed a mutation in the Cordyceps fungus that allows it hijack humans, transforming its victims into deadly zombies. It is discovered in Indonesia, then, within a week of its discovery, the brain-colonizing fungus has spread around the globe, wreaking havoc and hastening the demise of the human race as they transform into mushroom monsters.
I pulled out my silicone brain mold to make an inspired-dish: gummy brains!
1/2 cup water
1 to 2 teaspoon blue butterfly pea flower powder
3 envelopes unflavored gelatin
2 Tablespoons organic granulated sugar
also needed: brain mold
In a small saucepan, pour your water and whisk in the sugar and blue butterfly pea flower powder till dissolved. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top and let sit for at least 5 minutes. Not all of the gelatin will absorb the liquid beneath; that's okay.
After five minutes, heat the mixture over a low to medium heat until the gelatin is dissolved and the mixture is thickened and clear. You can pour directly into the mold from the saucepan, if you like. I don't trust my neatness without a spout, so I transferred the mixture to a measuring cup.
Pour the mixture into the molds. You can pour all the way to the top, since it doesn't expand. Place the mold on a flat tray and put them in the freezer for 20 to 30 minutes.
They should pop out easily. If they don't put them back in the freezer for a few more minutes.
So far I've been inspired by mummies, ghost(busters), and now zombies for our Halloween Movies & Munchies event. What's next? Witches?!? Stay tuned.