For the pig ears: Place the pig ears, carrots, garlic, celery, bay leaves onions and thyme in a large pot, and cover with water. Bring to a boil, and then turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook until the ears can be pierced easily with a knife, 4 hours.
For the hot sauce: Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. While the ears cook, roast the garlic, peppers, jalapenos, onions, habaneros and bay leaf, 45 minutes.
Place all of the roasted ingredients in a large pot and cover with the vinegar and 1 gallon water. Bring to a boil and cook for 20 minutes. In batches, puree the contents of the pot in a blender until smooth. Then add in the sugar and salt.
Remove the ears from the stock, discard the vegetables and reserve the stock for later use. Place the pig ears on a sheet pan and cool in the refrigerator.
In large pot heat the oil over medium heat until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reaches 350 degrees F. Once the ears are cool, thinly slice and place in a large bowl. Coat the ears with the cornstarch. In small batches, fry the pig ears for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring with a slotted spoon stir to make sure they do not stick together. Remove the ears with a slotted spoon and place in a medium bowl lined with paper towels. Season with salt, and toss to evenly coat. Repeat with the remaining ears. Serve immediately with the hot sauce.
When blending hot liquid, first let it cool for five minutes or so, then transfer it to a blender, filling only halfway. Put the lid on, leaving one corner open. Cover the lid with a kitchen towel to catch splatters, and pulse until smooth.
Recipe courtesy of Eddie Russell