My cousin, Bonnie, an avid fisherwoman, posted a picture of gelatin worms made in bendable drinking straws a week or so ago and joked about using them for bait. I immediately thought of the pending visit of my nephews and niece from Kansas and knew it would be the perfect way to show them:
The first batch I tried was not an epic failure, as some people commented on the instructions I found in several places on the net (including Savvy Living which copied it verbatim from Instructables), but it wasn’t a huge success either. Eh, Justin liked them so that was good, but I wasn’t going to try transporting them 2 hours in 95+ degree weather when they weren’t even holding up well in my climate controlled house.
So, I made a second batch and voila – success! Based on the experience I have the following suggestions for those that wish to attempt this:
- one package unflavored gelatin means ALL FOUR envelopes, not one envelope. You could probably get by with three as I read somewhere else later, but after the first flop I wasn’t going to risk it.
- try to use a container with straight sides and have the straws sit as snugly as possible. The 1 quart carton is the best option because you can peel it away to remove the straws.
- YES! the mixture pours out the bottom of the straws and fills both in and around the straw, hence suggestion #2. (the stuff on the outside of the straw doesn’t have to be “wasted” – just eat it separately)
- don’t panic that the straws aren’t completely filled, it is actually more difficult to remove the worms if you don’t have some space at the top.
- the whipped cream is used to make the worms appear solid instead of translucent like gelatin would be normally. The first batch I used non dairy whipped topping and the second I used plain old milk, looked and tasted fine albeit not as creamy.
- seems obvious to me, but put the straws in upside down to ensure you get the ridges from the straw.
- I had a hard time removing the worms from the straw and gave up after about 25 since I really only wanted it as a joke for the kids and to take some pictures for the site. I read on one site to use a bike pump with the big nozzle attachment (the one you would use for blowing up a beach ball).
All in all, it was a cute idea but a pain in the neck to do, especially to remove them from the straws. I will probably never make them again (unless one of the kids begs me to) otherwise I’d just go for the same effect with gummy worms.
Until next time, happy eating.