YOU can buy jelly pellets in the shops, but you can also make your own. And they’re great for carp, F1 carp, tench, bream, crucians, roach… and practically anything that swims in a day ticket lake!
If you make your own you know what goes into them, and you can vary everything from the colour and flavour to the consistency.
A softer pellet would be better for winter fishing because the cold water will harden it, in the same way that cheese paste should be made softer in winter than in summer.
And the extra bonus of making your own jelly pellets, apart from the huge satisfaction you get from catching fish on something that you’ve made yourself, is that they will cost you much less than the manufactured ones.
Here Angler’s Mail contributor Bill Rushmer explains how he makes his own jelly pellets…
1. Get all your ingredients together before you start preparing. You will need a jelly, a bag of good quality expanda pellets and a sweet glug.
I avoid the expandas that are lower quality and a bit like biscuits. I use Yorkshire Baits expandas, as they are top quality, and I also use the same company’s Sweet Toffee glug, which works really well for me.
2. Boil a kettle, tear two lumps of jelly off the ‘brick’, put them in a heat-resistant container or glass pellet pump jar and dissolve them in 150 ml or 200 ml of hot water, depending on how firm you want the finished bait to be. I then add about 20 ml of the glug, stirring everything up to ensure it is evenly mixed. If you want to colour them, add a few drops of food colouring.
3. When the mixture has cooled a little, pour it into a pellet pump container and add a handful of expanda pellets, so that you have about half and half pellets and liquid. Then attach the pump and work it until all of the air has been sucked out. You should see the pellets swell up as they take on the liquid.
4. When most of the liquid has been absorbed, open the pump and pour the bait into a sieve over a food bowl and leave this in a fridge to cool down. Fruit flavours won’t upset the other members of your family, but if you’ve got your own bait fridge you can experiment with pungent fishy glugs.
5. Check to see when the pellets have set to a rubbery consistency and then pour them into an airtight tub ready to take to the bank. The big advantage of jelly pellets is that you can fish them directly on the hook. If they are softer than you want, use less water, and add more if they are too firm. Ideally they should stay on the hook during the cast but not always come back when you strike or retrieve.
New bait dye amazingly keeps hands clean!