Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I say Jello You say Jelly

Hello all,

I made a quick trip over to London this past weekend and had the chance to make some alcoholic jellies, as they are called over in the U.K.

My first alcohol novelty encounter was during a walk along theThames. There I discovered that you can sell alcohol out of a street cart in downtown London. These blokes were making boozie smoothies right outside the National Theater. According to the owner, you only need a personal alcohol license and a premise license. The National Theater had granted him the premise license. Such a different world over there. I think I'd have to give my first born's first born to get a license in Boston. I had a delicious Strawberry smoothie with a shot of Bacardi and Antonio had the Peach Vodka smoothie.

From there we strolled over to the headquarters of Bompas and Parr. Alas, there was no Willy Wonkesque factory to be seen. They were out at Carnival at Notting Hill, as was most of London, eating and drinking and getting merry like Christmas.

Sunday night, I had the fortune of eating a delicious Sunday roast dinner at Hannah and Chris's. As the conversation progressed to jello shots (OK, what else do I talk about!??! I dragged the conversation to it and they politely listened), Hannah showed me the sheet gelatin that they use in the UK. There is no flavoring, similar to the powdered Knox that we use in the States.

As a thank you for the dinner I made an orange juice, peach, vodka jelly for their picnic the next day. It was my first time using metric scales outside of a lab. (Why do we still use cups and ounces?????) Playing by ear, I dissolved the gelatin, OJ, splash of orangina, and some water in a pan. Then I cooled it and mixed in Smirnoff and some grenadine. I think I made a decent treat for my new English friends.

The dinner conversation also led to savory meat alcohol jellies. I think I've found a whole new branch to delve into. Hmmm.

That's it for now. Maybe I should make a trek around the globe exploring the wide world of jellies. Feel free to sponsor me.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Tequila Blue

This past week, I had the perfect weather to make more gelatinous creations. For a beautiful garden party in Provincetown, I made some Margarita and Berry Blue geks. The bluberries are just past season, but still abundant and inexpensive at markets around town.

I would like to make blueberry puree and then make a tri-layered shot. Next time....next time.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Have you seen or read Amadeus? There's a scene when Mozart makes his entrance and Salieri, the court composer, plays a piece he wrote to welcome Mozart. Then Mozart critiques it, sits down and makes a masterpiece of it. Well, that's a little bit about how I feel right now. Except I didn't receive any harsh criticism nor am I feeling burning jealousy. So I guess, my situation is not really like that at all, rather, I have, through the power of the internet, met my Mozart of Jello. Mozarts to be exact- Bompas and Parr.

I went onto the Jello website yesterday to see what those crazy Kraft conglomerates were up to and I saw this posting about the Jellymongers- Bompas and Parr. I clicked on the link and WHOA! The creativity and expertise these gents show is ridonkulous! They had a jello White House. Hey, I had a jello White House(see my posting from InAGARation in January. But, theirs... oh my lord..their's made mine look like a three year's old drawing of his family. You know, the heart is in it, but the fine motor skills aren't quite developed.

So check out these guys and the amazing work they do over in London. Road trip anyone?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Drag Queen Jello Wrestling!

It's been a busy summer for Gelology and my postings have all but stopped. Ok, they stopped, forget the "all but." But it's not for lack of fun and events. Back in July the infamous Drag Queen, Kris Knieval, was hosting Drag Queen Jello Wrestling at a bar in Boston. Jello, wigs, makeup... sounds like a recipe for disaster and fun!

Kris's mother works for a retirement home, so we were able to purchase the gallon bags of Jello which save you significant amounts of money. Their first time doing the event, Kris told me they cleared out an entire grocery store's stock of 3oz Jello boxes! This bulk Jello box had three different flavors, Lime, Orange, and Lemon. Kris told me he avoided any red Jello, as the wrestlers ended up stained pink for the next 24 hours.

The Jello Wrestling was scheduled for Monday night, so the day before we met up in the kitchen of the bar and began preparing forty gallons of Jello.

After four hours, we were done. The containers were in the walk in and we walked away sweaty and sticky. From the Jello! Come on people.

On Monday, I arrived at the bar and the tech guys were busy inflating the pool. I brought out the numerous containers that the Jello had been placed in, and it was wiggly and jiggly and ready to go. We dumped the jello into the pool. It made a satisfying sound as the large chunks of jello releases from the container and slurped into the pool. The unfortunate thing was green, orange, and yellow makes....brown. Not so pretty.

The drag queens showed up and so did the patrons. By the time the jello shots came out and the drag queens started wrestling, more fun was had than a barrel full of monkeys. Make that more fun than a jello-filled barrel of cross-dressing monkeys.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Mandarin

Who doesn't have fond memories of Jello with fruit embedded in it from their elementary school cafeteria. I was always a fan of the green Jello with mandarin orange slices in it. However, I was never a fan of the orange jello with shaved carrots.

So, I created a new gelatin shot with my gelatin/fruit combination.

Plus, I used a new silicon mold I purchased at AC Moore Arts and Crafts store. The mold looked like little suns and with the lack of sunshine we've been having in Boston, I figured these shots could brighten up the day.

The Madarin

1 6oz box lime gelatin
1 envelope Knox

1 can (14oz) mandarin orange slices
1 1/2 cup Absolut Mandarin
1/2 peach schnapps

When I was a kid I remember drinking the juice from the can, so I decided to add the juice and slices into the shots. Next up, I'll make some shots with fruit cocktail.

Meanwhile, if you have a facebook account, become a fan of Gelology!

Happy almost 4th of July.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Experiment

Yesterday I received an email asking "Can you make jello shots using just Knox and alcohol?" First, it was exciting to get an email soliciting advice about gelatin shots. Second, it reminded me of an experiment I did with a friend about a month ago. He wanted to make pure Scotch shots, so we tried.

There are two main problems with making pure alcohol shots. The first is that you have to dissolve the Knox in hot to boiling liquid. Alcohol has a lower evaporation point than water so when you boil it, the alcohol disappears, thus negating the effect of a super packed shot. The second problem is gelatin doesn't set as well in alcohol. But that you can overcome by just adding more Knox. A general rule of thumb is one envelope knox for every cup of liquid. For pure alcohol shot, try 1 1/2 to 2 envelopes for every cup of liquid.

Here was our experiment:

Scotch- Neat and Jiggly

1 envelope Knox gelatin
1/4 cup Scotch (to heat up)
3/4 cup Scotch (room temperature)
some orange zest

In a small microwave proof bowl, add the 1/4 cup Scotch and sprinkle the Knox over the liquid. Let stand one minute. Microcwave for 2-3 minutes until hot. Remove from microwave and stir. Wait to 5 minutes until cool and add the 3/4 cup room temperature Scotch and stir until mixed.

Pour into a container and set in the freezer for 30 minutes.

I would have to say, they were truly bits of solid Scotch. The translucence of the shots was intriguing. Rodin liked them, and that's what counts.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Raspberry Berets

The kind you'd make for a 31st birthday.

A friend of mine turned thirty-one last week and when I asked him what kind of shots he'd like, he replied- raspberry. Alright then. With that in mind I made some raspberry cranberry cocktail shots.

Raspberry Berets

1 6oz. box of raspberry gelatin
2 envelopes Knox Gelatine
1 3/4 cups cranberry cocktail
1 1/4 cups raspberry smirnoff vodka
3/4 cup peach schnapps

Friday, June 19, 2009

Mocha Choca Latta Jelloooo

Recently I went on to the Jello website to see what they had posted. Lo and behold, they actually had a Jello shot page. It's called their Jello Lounge and you have to type in your birthday to be allowed access. How parental! On the site they had some great ideas. Hey, I can't accuse them of stealing mine, they did invent the stuff didn't they? But what really blew my mind was that they had a recipe where they combined Jello and Pudding! Oh My God! Can it be done?! Yes, it can. So here is my variation on their Orange Mocha Minis.

Mocha Choca Latta Shottas

1 6 oz. box of Orange gelatin
1 3 oz. instant chocolate pudding
1 3/4 cups hot water
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup Svedka vodka
1/2 cup coffee liquor

Mix the jello and hot water. Let cool. Mix pudding and alcohol and beat. Combine and let sit in fridge for three hours. You can definitely boost the adult kick by adding more vodka and reducing the coffee liquor.

I had some fun taking photos in the garden of where I'm staying in Cape Cod.

And look, I even found my new shot girl!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Green Monstah goes West

A bartender here in Boston makes the most delicious green drink. He is truly a mixologist. I watch in awe as he takes a whole smorgasbord of liquids and shakes away producing this elixir that makes me happy and if it makes you happy, it can't be that bad. This is my rendition of this, as of yet , unnamed drink.

I'm calling my shots The Green Monstah after the infamous wall at Fenway park.

The Green Monstah

6oz box of lime gelatin
2 envelopes of Knox gelatine
1 1/2 cups hot water
1/4 cup margarita mix
1/4 cup coconut rum
1/4 cup peach schnapps
1/4 cup vodka
1/4 cup apple pucker

After I mixed all this up I put them in my favorite silicon cups and let them gelatify (not a real word) in the fridge. I made these for a friend's going away party. He is taking the leap of faith and leaving the East Coast for the West. The combination of tart and sweet were well received, even by people from Ireland and Serbia who had never had a gelatin shot before!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

True Blood Shots

These shots were inspired by the HBO series "True Blood." If you are not familiar with it, it's a show about Vampires in deep woods Louisiana. The Japanese have created a synthetic blood product so that vampires can now live peaceably among humans...or so we think. Interesting premise, and the perfect inspiration for...... gelatin shots.

I looked at some Bloody Mary recipes and then played around in the kitchen. Here is the recipe I decided upon.

True Blood Shots
8oz V-8 Juice
1 envelope knox gelatine
Juice from 1 lime
a couple dashes worcester sauce
1/4 teaspoon wasabi
1/2 3oz package of lemon jello
3/4 cup Vodka
1/4 cup saki

I must say they looked cool. You can serve them on a wooden stake! Or skewer, whichever you have lying around the house. Taste, however.....hmmm. Let's just say they weren't the best shots I ever made. But that fits with the theme of the show. The synthetic blood supposedly meets the nutritional needs of the Living Dead but still leaves them longing for their human delicacies. For we the viewers, the shots allow us to play True Blood drinking games, like every time Jason Stackhouse appears shirtless you take a shot.

How would I rate these shots? Not A+ or -, nor B+ or B-, but maybe an O. These would be served best as a garnish with a real Bloody Mary.

Or blood.

A Pack of Pickled Peckers

Well, not pickled, but gelatified. This past weekend I made over 500 gelatin shots for the Boston Pride Parade. There were several parties Friday night as well as a plethora of brunches on Saturday. Ok, there wasn't a plethora, but a whole heckuva lot-thora.

What says Pride better than a rainbow of gelatin shots in the shape of a penis. I made six different kinds of shots, one from each color of the rainbow.

Raspberry Shequilas
Raspberry gelatin, tequila, knox, strawberry margarita mix, raspberry pucker

Fuzzy Navels
Orange gelatin, knox, peach schnapps, and vodka

Five Alive
Lemon gelatin, Mandarin vodka, Ruby Red Vodka, Limoncello, Sweetened Lime Juice

Lime Shequilas
Lime gelatin, tequila, triple sec, margarita mix

Blue Balls
Berry Blue gelatin, vodka, peach schnapps

Grape Balls of Fire
Grape gelatin, blackberry brandy, grape pucker, vodka

They went like hotcakes. Ok, they went more like penis shaped gelatin shots, which is a whole heckuva a lot more fun.

Thanks to Shawn for the photos.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Marathon Monday

Back in April I made some gelatin for Marathon Monday (aka Patriot's Day). This is the day when approximately 20,000 runners hit the streets in Natick and run, run, run all the way to Boston. Last year I ran for a charity and had a great experience. About twenty hours each week were spent running the wintery streets of New England. It definitely kept the blues away. But this year I chose to dedicate my time to other projects, like making gelatin. Healthy alternative? I like to think so.

Thinking back to the marathon I clearly remembered the water and gatorade stations. It was a warm day for the race and I definitely lived for the liquid refreshment. So, what kind of gel could I make to simulate that experience.....

I know, Orange Gatorade gelatin! I started with powdered gatorade, which was difficult to find, and added unflavored gelatin to it.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Jello Performance Art

I just spent a lovely weekend up in Provincetown(aka Problemstown) with some friends. They have the most amazing house and in the front, surrounded by a fairy tale-like hedge fence is the most immaculate garden. The varieties of flowers is astounding. I was entranced by there the black Irises that became iridescent in the late afternoon sun.

On the first day, the weather was more murder mystery than sunny pre-summer day. The fog was thick and so heavy it felt like suspended raindrops. Well, er, I guess that's what fog IS, but you know. You can could actually feel the mist drops landing on you as you walked. I all but expected a zombie arm to come of it. Rodin and I took that time to go shopping for shot supplies. Normally the Stop n Shop in Ptown has the best assortment of Jello. But there were hardly any flavors. I guess they haven't geared up for the summer Jello glut yet. On the way back we stopped by the Police Station and applied for street performer licenses. All it takes is a valid Driver's License. And what do you know? ! We can now LEGALLY mime on the streets of Provincetown. Watch out world!

Ok, so the fog was making us crazy. But eventually it cleared and left us a sunny kitchen to make... you guessed it...... Gelatin Shots.

I was down to my last two boxes of watermelon gelatin. It is sooo delicious, but I'm not going to let a little thing like scarcity stop me from trying out a new recipe.

These shots were made from watermelon gelatin, tequila, peach schnapps, apple pucker, and cranberry juice.
It's a variation from a recipe found in "Party Shots" by Mittie Hellmich. It was the recipe book given to me by Michelle, my jello shot mentor. I call these "Shequila Shots" after the infamous tranny performer Shequita. Most known for performances on "America's Got Talent" but who also puts on an amazing show at the Barracuda in New York City.

I used the penis ice molds I found at Spencer's Gifts. After an hour in the freezer they were ready. Sean and I had a little fun using the macro function on his camera. Look how beautiful the pictures came out, and with the garden in the background. I would have to say these are the classiest photos of a penis gelatin shot anywhere on the whole wide web!

Look for us soon on the streets of Ptown doing Jello Performance Art. Interpret it as you will.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Eggcellent Surprise Shot

OK. This is it for the egg puns and Easter shots. While brainstorming ideas, the ultimate idea came up. What if we could make a jello shot inside a real eggshell! Could we? Should we? After a quick google search, we realized that it has been done before. And if it's on the internet, it has to be true! Right?

To start, I unfolded a paper clip and punctured a hole in both ends of an egg.

I blew out the egg innards and then rinsed with hot water for ten minutes until the liquid coming out was clear and non foamy. Now, a chef friend of mine told me the risk of salmonella from eggs is pretty low, especially if you buy eggs from healthy egg farms. To be sure of not sickening my guests, I microwaved the egg shells for two minutes on high.

For the shots, I made more Strawberry Daquiri and Watermelon margarita shots. I thought both the brilliant red and green insides would heighten the wow factor when someone cracked the egg open.

Pouring the gelatin into the eggs was tricky. I had to enlarge one hole and plug up the other whole with wax. Using a funnel, I poured the gelatin in and then set the eggs in a carton in the fridge for two hours.

After that, I plugged the top hole with wax, and set the eggs in easter egg dye. When the guests arrived I handed them the eggs without telling them what was inside. They were amazed, then skeptical, then amazed, then still skeptical. Needless to say, everyone enjoyed them.

Poached Egg Shots

Welcome back to the third in a series of gelatin shots designed for Easter. This blogisode will introduce you to the poached egg shot. It was a variation of the Huevos gelatos from the previous blog entry. I had extra sweet condensed milk from the Gelushi and extra Pina colada gelatin, so I thought, "hmm, can I make a shot that looks like an actual poached egg?" Here's my attempt.

Egg white
1 16 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
2 envelops knox
1 cup hot water
1/2 cup creme de cacao
1/2 cup vodka

1 3oz box pineapple Jello
1 envelop Knox gelatine
1 cup hot water
1 cup vodka

I made the yolk in a small plastic container and set in the freezer for one hour. Once it was solid I cut into circular pieces to resemble yolks.

Then I filled the bottom half of the eggs molds with the white layer, added a yolk, and then closed the egg molds. I continued to pour the white layer into the mold using a funnel. After three hours in the fridge they were ready to be released and eaten. It would be fun to serve on a plate with some gummy bacon!

Huevos gelatos

Happy Easter! This weekend was a flurry of gelatin shot ideas. We had so much fun making the Gelushi, that we brainstormed other Easter gelatin shot idea. Michelle and I are big egg decorating fans. In fact, it was three years ago that I met Michelle when I was invited by a mutual friend to Kegs N Eggs party. I was blown away by her Eggstravaganza. She had every kind of decorating kit imaginable plus she even had the original 1970's egg vice that clamped onto and egg and allowed you to spin the egg while markers made perfect circles. I had met my holiday match. Michelle also served me my first Jello shots and the rest, as they say, is history.

Michelle found some egg-shaped plastic jello molds on the internet a while back. What was great was that they had patterns etched on the inside so that the jello looks like it is decorated. You could use regular plastic eggs as well. Just cut or drill a large hole into the top and place the eggs in an egg carton to stand upright. We decided to make four different colors, red, yellow, green, and orange.

For the red eggs, we made strawberry daquiri shots. The orange were orange Jello, peach schnapps, and vodka for a fuzzy navel. For the green, we were really excited to find a new maker of gelatin. Jelly Belly, the maker of the best jelly beans in the world, now also makes gelatin. They had a green watermelon gelatin. So we made those into watermelon margaritas. Finally, Michele had been saving a special edition Jello brand flavor she found in a store in Pennsylvania- Pina Colada Jello. Yum! We mixed that with Malibu rum.

(Red) Strawberry Daquiri
1 6oz box Strawberry gelatin (large box)
2 envelopes knox gelatin
2 cups hot water
2 cups Rum

(Green) Watermelon Margarita
1 3oz box Jelly Belly Watermelon gelatin
1 envelope Knox
1 cup hot water
1 cup Sauza Gold Tequila. This did affect the color a bit. You can use Blanco instead.

(Yellow) Pina Colada
1 3 oz box Pina Colada Jello (really hard to find). You can also use Pineapple (Still hard to find)
1 envelope Knox
1 cup hot water
1 cup Malibu Rum

(Orange) Fuzzy Navel
1 3oz box orange gelatin
1 envelope Knox
1 cup hot water
3/4 cup Vokda
1/4 cup peach schnapps

We prepared the egg molds by spraying the insides lightly with vegetable oil. Then we poured the poured the gelatin liquid into the molds using a funnel and set them in the freezer for thirty minutes. After that we placed in the fridge for another hour.

So when the egg decorating party goers arrived, we served these eggstra special treats while they decorated the real eggs.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Happy Easter for all those in the mood to color eggs, and eat marshmallow Peeps! Michelle and I went to town for her annual Kegs and Eggs party. Fruity multi-colored gelatin and Easter go together like knives and pumpkins. In my house they do at least. For this event we started by making a gelatin shot inspired by the Food Librarian. She has the most amazing collection of baking recipes. Michelle forwarded me her recipe for Broken Glass Jello and instantly we knew it had to be made into a shot.

We pretty much followed the Food Librarian's guidelines for making the gelatin but instead of just adding one cup of hot water for the colors, we added 1 cup hot and then after cooling, 3/4 cup vodka and 1/4 cup peach schnapps. This we did the day before the party and let them chill overnight.

Then next day we cut the cubes up into one inch squares and made the binding layer of hot water, unflavored gelatin, and sweetened condensed milk. We placed in the freezer for an hour and then transfered to the fridge and it was ready to go.

Most people thought it was sushi at first so we decided to call these Gelushi- patent pending, of course.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Leprechaun's Shot of Gold!

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Or if you're in Boston- Happy Evacuation Day! From what I've learned, Evacuation Day celebrates the departure of the British from Boston during the Revolutionary War. Whereas St. Patrick's Day was used as propaganda to get Irish Americans to feel patriotic towards the U.S. and enlist in the Spanish-American War.

Nowadays, adults just like to drink outside and watch marching bands go by.

In honor of this Green Holiday, I made two types of gelatin shots- The first I called car bombs. Not quite like the drink but close.
I combined lime gelatin, whiskey, Bailey's, creme do cacao, and spearmint schnapps. I always forget that when working with Bailey's it floats to the top and looks very unappealing. Like milk curdling in vinegar. But worry not, it solidifies and gives the shots and double layered effect.

The second shot was the Irish Flag. I made a three layered shot with lime gelatin, orange gelatin, and milk. To make the milky white layer I combined unflavored gelatin, sugar, and evaporated milk. The booziness came from Vodka and Triple Sec. The real trick is timing the pouring of the layers. I pre-make all the gelatin and leave them in containers at room temperature. They won't congeal if you keep it about 68 degrees. Stir them occasionally to retard the gellifying process. Then I pour one layer, place the tray in the freezer, then wait. I get a little impatient and keep opening the door and poking which can mess up the surface. You want it to be think enough to support the next poured layer but not to solid. If the layer gets too solid than the new layer will not adhere and when you cut the finished product, it separates- so sad.

Well, the shots turned out perfect and I brought them around to a few parties to much cheers and bally-hoo- or whatever irish interjection you can come up with to accentuate the theme.

Now, to start planning for the Boston marathon. What to make? If you have any suggestions write em up. The best suggestion will get a free tray of shots for their marathon party!