Watch out for Jason Voorhees – it’s Friday the 13th! Haven’t seen the 1980 film (or any of the flicks in the sweeping franchise)? Chances are you’ve seen reincarnations of the scared-campers-meet-slasher-in-the-woods plot in everything from USA Network’s Psych to echoes of it in animated cartoons (like the camping episode on SpongeBob SquarePants). That’s right: Anytime someone’s trapped in the forest, you can thank the now-classic film for the ensuing shivers (or laughs).
Even before the film, though, Friday the 13th was seen as a bad omen – an unlucky day. But it doesn’t have to be! Use it as an excuse to create something fun and freaky in your kitchen, instead – like these nine strange, bizarre and totally fun creations we found around the web.
And hey, don’t get too frazzled. If it makes you feel any better, in Spanish-speaking countries, the unlucky date is … Tuesday the 13th!
Combine spinach, milk, bananas, peanut butter, honey and carob chips in a blender. Pulse. That’s right: This green smoothie’s ingredients might sound like a revolting combination, but the bitterness of the spinach is washed away by the smooth peanut butter and a touch of honey.
You can call this green smoothie whatever you want with your kids to make it perfect for Friday the 13th – maybe goblin goo? Whatever you try, they’ll be surprised that green smoothies actually taste pretty good (and they’re healthy!).
If you really want to give your kids a scare, what about making meatballs … out of mice? Don’t worry: It only looks that way with this Metro Parent recipe that has you shape the meat into little mice. Complete the look with black olive pieces for eyes and thin ham slices for tales.
It’s a culinary freak of nature – and it tastes incredible! Your kids will wonder how you were able to cook spaghetti into hot dogs with this creative recipe. The secret? You cut the hot dogs into pieces and then push dry spaghetti noodles through them. Once the water is boiling, drop in the spaghetti-poked dogs and you’ve got a clever meal that will have your kids thinking you’re a genius – or, perhaps more fittingly, mad scientist.
This recipe for edible wallpaper comes right from Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The apple cider-tasting concoction is made almost as you would make fruit leathers. But, of course, you can’t leave the fruity “wallpaper” plain. Add melted white chocolate designs to this fun recipe that will have your kids wanting to be chocolate interior designers.
These Texas Hold-Ums mini beef burgers might look like regular hamburgers – but these bite-sized sandwiches pack a blood-curdling punch. This recipe from Rachael Ray includes two – that’s right, two – chipotle chiles in the meat mixture. Your kids will be reaching for the water with this five-alarm hamburger that’s hot – and not just the temperature!
Play up the drama with these cupcakes that look like real ice cream cones. Tell your kids, “These are going to melt really fast” when you serve them. They’ll bite into the ice cream cones expecting cool ice cream – and instead, they’ll find moist cake! You can add to the effect by drizzling melted white chocolate on the ice cream cone after you’ve baked the cake batter inside to make it look like it’s melting.
Mid-century America spawned plenty of strange sci-fi – and the equally bizarre pairing Jell-O and canned vegetables. That’s right: This vintage lemon-Jell-O and vegetable recipe is something your grandma may well have dazzled – or petrified – guests with. If vegetables suspended in gelatin aren’t enough to make your stomach turn, top it off with a worm-like frosting of tartar sauce. Find a vintage recipe here.
Cue up The Mummy this weekend and make these creepy treats. Your kids can help you wrap uncooked hot dogs (what is it with hot dogs and freaky recipes?!) in Pillsbury crescent dough. Oh, but don’t forget to put a slice of American cheese around the hot dogs before you wrap ’em. The cheese not only gives the hot dogs a tasty sauce, but it also oozes out of the crescent dough as it cooks, making the meal all the eerier once it’s time to take a bite.
Impress your kids by making pop rocks right in your own kitchen. Most of the ingredients – like corn syrup, baking soda and sugar – are easy to find. You might have to go to a gourmet shop to find citric acid, or you can order it online at Amazon. Weirdly delicious!
This post was originally published in 2012 and is updated regularly.