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Sunday, December 27, 2015

Making Homemade Carp Boilies


I wrote the original version of this post last spring to document my first experimental attempts to make homemade boilies. Following several days of traveling during the holiday season I plan to start making boilies for the upcoming spring carp fishing season.

I will use the recipe below in addition to some new ideas that I have come up with, but hot peppers are going to play a big role in my ongoing boilie making and carp fishing efforts. I am going to continue with the sesame oil and also incorporate peanut powder and some other items I've been reading about during the off season.

Original post:

I have read through the articles Mario Kok writes for the Carp Angler's Group and will use his basic recipe suggestions for my own attempt at carp boilie making.


  • 1/4 cup corn meal
  • 1 1/4 cup wheat flour
  • 6 jalapenos
  • 3 habaneros
  • 2 TBSP cayenne powder
  • 1 TBSP white pepper powder
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 TBSP sesame oil
  • 2 TBSP Southern Comfort

  • 1. I sliced up jalapenos and habaneros, added the sesame oil to a sauce pan and then fried the peppers for about 10 minutes on medium heat taking care to stir occasionally to prevent burning. The strategy for frying is to release some of the oils and juices in the peppers. I used plastic gloves for this process.

    2. I added just enough water to cover the sliced peppers and brought the mixture to a boil. Once boiling I reduced the heat to simmer and cooked the peppers for 20 minutes to soften them up. I left the mixture on the stove top to steep for a couple of hours without heat. Then I brought the mixture to a boil again and simmered for nearly an hour to make a soup.

    3. I allowed the peppers to cool for about 30 minutes and used a small hand blender to a make a "habanero and jalapeno" mushy paste.

    4. I mixed up the dry ingredients and ran them through a flour sifter.

    5. I added the eggs to my pepper mush mixture and thoroughly combined them before starting to add the dry ingredients.

    6. I added a little of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mixed them up; and then added a little more; repeating the process until I achieved a consistency that would form a dough ball.

    7. I rolled the boilies in sizes from 12 mm to 22 mm; ending up with 125 boilies total. I used plastic gloves to prevent problems with the habaneros burning my skin.

    8. I brought a pot of water to a rolling boil and then added the dough balls in groups of 10 allowing them to boil for 90 seconds before removing and placing them on cooling racks used for cookies.

    9. I allowed the boilies to cool for several hours before placing in plastic bags for storage. I took great care to make sure they were completely cool so that there was no condensation in the plastic bag during storage.

    This is my first attempt making my own boilies. It wasn't too hard to do. When I make them again I will boil the pepper soup a lot less. The peppers were plenty soft after about 30 minutes. I am afraid the extra cooking loses some of the potency of the peppers.

    Don't ask me why I decided to try the Southern Comfort. I was trying to think of something sweet to add a little extra to the boilies.

    Sunday, December 20, 2015

    Preparing Fish at a Detroit Area Restaurant

    Buffalo fish cooking at a Detroit restaurant (Photo courtesy of Detroit Free Press and Salwan Georges, photographer)
    Last June while fishing near our home in western Wayne County Michigan, Linda and I met some young twenty-something year olds fishing near us at a local lake.

    They caught a few fish, but were very interested in convincing us to give them the fish we were catching to add to their cache. I shared a few fish with them that day after getting to know them a little bit. They described a process for preparing and cooking the fish that sounds very familiar to the picture above published in the Detroit Free Press article on 12/20/15.

    Saturday, December 19, 2015

    Fire Your Boss and Go Carp Fishing

    I am an avid NHRA fan. I don't attend races like I used too before the responsibilities of adulthood took over my life, but I still follow the sport every chance I get on the web, on TV and through magazines.

    Common carp landed in May 2015
    At one of the races I attended in Bowling Green, KY more than 25 years ago I remember seeing a guy selling synthetic motor oil from a rented Budget Rent-A-Car box van. He sold out of the motor oil over the course of the weekend. I stopped by his tent on the last day of the race and immediately noticed what I suspect is the key to his success that weekend. He had a passion for business, a knowledge of motor oil and a very attention catching slogan that drew people to his booth.

    Those observations from 25 years ago are still equally important today if you want to start a business with the hopes of following your passions. It's likely, since you are reading a blog post on my site, that you are passionate about carp fishing. If you are like me you have probably brainstormed for ideas to earn a living by working less and/or earning an income that allows more flexibility to spend more time fishing.

    There are a few ways to do it that I can think of off the top of my head.

    1. Work really, really hard for 5 or 6 years saving a lot of money, then get a job that allows more time for fishing and live off the savings for a while each year. (Speculative stock investing, day trading, real estate passive income, etc.)
    2. Work 30+ years, fish on weekends and vacation days, add to your 401K, and hope social security, money from the 401K and pension (if you are lucky enough to have one) provide you enough money to enjoy fishing while you still can during the years you have left.
    3. Get a job or start a business that combines your passion for fishing with a passion for earning a living doing something you enjoy. (Working is not so bad f you love what you're doing, right?)

    The guys selling oil at the NHRA Division III event 25 years ago found a way to enjoy the sport of drag racing and earn money while attending the races.

    Why can't we follow his lead and start a business based on our love of fishing?

    Ideas anyone?

    Here are a few ideas I have thought of. Maybe one of them will be a trigger to help you:
    1. Sell fishing equipment
    2. Teach others how to fish
    3. Fishing guide service
    4. Bait company
    5. Organizer of fishing tournaments
    6. Start a magazine about fishing
    7. Write a book about fishing

    No one said it was easy. Nothing worthwhile ever is. Good luck!

    Sell jerky, eat jerky, earn extra money

    Sunday, December 13, 2015

    GoPro HD Hero 4 Session Camera

    The GoPro HD Hero 4 Session Camera is currently available for $200.  That's a pretty good deal. I might have to pick one up myself as a Christmas present.

    GoPro Session Camera (photo courtesy GoPro)

    Monday, December 7, 2015

    Carp Fishing Tip - Peanut Powder

    My first two years of carp fishing I primarily fished with flavored maize with some commercially produced boilies utilized occasionally to add a little variety.

    Last year I started making my own homemade boilies with some very good results. But after analyzing my results I am confident that I can improve the results from these homemade boilies by adding more protein to my base recipe.

    When I made my boilies earlier this year I used items that I could find in my cupboard and didn't really put a lot of thought into it. I have posted the specific recipe previously, but here's the link again if you need it: Homemade Carp Boilies

    A few weeks ago I was surfing around the internet and ran across something that will provide an interesting source of protein that I am going to incorporate in my recipe next season and it's readily available at the local grocery store.

    Peanut powder

    I am also going to try some of this stuff in my ground bait mix and see how it goes, but adding it to boilies is likely a better strategy unless I can find it available in bulk. The volumes needed for mixing it in ground bait are cost prohibitive in smaller package sizes.

    Sunday, December 6, 2015

    What Do I Do When It's Too Cold to Fish for Carp?

    It's much too cold for me to fish comfortably, so I have placed my carp fishing efforts on hold for a few months until it warms up this spring.

    This time of year I spend time on other things; like updating this blog; like reading novels; like watching more football; like writing; and pursuing my aquarium keeping hobby (Tiger Oscar, Jack Dempsey and Gold Severum).

    The precipitation was the kind that Detroiters hated. It made driving a pain in the ass. Cold enough to turn the light rain into snow flurries, but not cold enough to actually melt when impacting the windshield. The driver flipped on the wipers alternating between low and intermittent settings. One was too fast and other too slow to keep the window cleared.

    He lowered the driver’s window an inch and lit a cigarette doing his best to blow the smoke through the crack and out into the early December night. Promising himself to give up the cancer sticks for good after the New Year, he took another puff.

    The radio played a non-descript Simon and Garfunkel tune as the vehicle merged onto I-94 east. Something about parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, but he didn’t care. The radio was used for background noise more than actual listening.

    Soothed by the familiar rhythm of the daily commute, he had to remind himself to concentrate on the driving. The freeway was sparsely lit except for occasional headlights from the west bound lanes. With hours to go before sunrise, traffic was light.

    He hugged the right lane and set the cruise control on 60 mph; driving well below the posted limit. Occasionally switching lanes to allow an eighteen-wheeler to merge from an on-ramp, pass a delivery van, or navigate around an airport shuttle transit bus. It was all so mundane. No reason to hurry. The work would be there when he arrived. It always was. But he needed the paycheck.

    He coasted down the off-ramp and turned right. Through a stop light; a right turn at the stop sign and then into the industrial park. Past one warehouse for a trucking company; another for an office supply operation; and a third that cleaned high dollar imported rugs for the well-healed. He continued driving toward the back of the park.

    The vehicle rolled up to the guard shack at 2:26 a.m. as it did every other day reporting for the early morning shift.

    The security officer stepped out of the shack and faced the vehicle. The driver extended his access badge to the officer.

    “What’s your name?” the officer asked.

    “Nathan Stutgardt.”

    “Date of employment?”

    “July 14”

    The guard flipped over the badge to the back and scanned the barcode. The hand held chirped its approval. He extended the vehicle search mirror haphazardly to view the undercarriage near the driver’s side door area, walked to the vehicle’s rear, repeated the ritual under the trunk, walked to the passenger side, and then to the front extending the mirror under the engine compartment.

    “Proceed,” the guard said, giving the thumbs up sign.

    Nathan wheeled the Nissan Maxima through the gate, past the thermal scanners on either side, slow enough for the surveillance camera to capture images of his license plate before passing over the three speed bumps and through the facility gate.

    Home for the next 9 hours.


    Detective Kerry Cates had been with the department for 27 years. His career spanned 3 precincts, put three kids through Catholic school, fueled an ulcer, high blood pressure, and burned through two wives.

    A thirty minute drive from downtown Detroit, he entered the apartment in Farmington Hills, flicked on the light and proceeded with the familiar nightly ritual.

    Place the car keys on the peg by the door. Cell phone on the kitchen counter top near the sink. Drop the loose change in the dish by the can opener. Proceed to the refrigerator to grab an Atwater Redford Red Ale. Pop the top before heading down the short hallway and into the bedroom and de-holstering the department issue Smith and Wesson .40 caliber M & P for storage in the gun cabinet sitting toward the rear of the walk-in closet next to the out-of-date and out-of-style sport coats and suit jackets that had accumulated in the years since wife number two decided she was no longer desired to be married to a Detroit police detective.

    He walked down the hallway and into the living room to assume his familiar position in the Lazy Boy and tune the remote to Fox Sports, ESPN or ESPN2. With luck the Tigers, Red Wings or Pistons would be on, but he would also settle for highlights of whatever college teams were being featured on Sportscenter. Between the Wolverines and Spartans the odds of catching the latest news and highlights about the Ann Arbor or East Lansing juggernauts would be high. Tonight it would be the ‘Wings wearing white at Joe Louis arena vs. the L.A. Kings – ‘Wings leading 4 -2 in the third period. And like most nights, Kerry fell asleep in the recliner before finishing the Atwater; and before the final buzzer sounded on the hockey game.

    Shortly after 4:00 a.m. he was awakened by the ringing cell phone.

    “Cates,” he answered.


    “Uh huh.”


    “I’ll meet you there.”

    Cates arrived within thirty minutes. He was greeted at the checkpoint near the entrance to the parking lot by two uniformed Detroit Police Department officers and a member of the private security firm contracted to control entry.

    “I need to see some identification sir,” the security officer said.

    “I’m with them,” Cates said pointing the DPD officers.

    “Sir, your identification,” the security officer repeated.

    Cates flashed his badge, satisfying the requirement.

    During the walk across the parking lot the two uniforms filled him in. Mass casualties. Blood everywhere. Unfortunately he’d seen it several times before, but it never got any easier.

    They entered the building through the front doors and were greeted by Sergeant Larry Smithfield.

    “Morning’ Cates,” Smithfield said. “We’ve got to stop meeting like this.”

    “What are you doing here Larry?” Cates asked.

    “Cates, this is not a one man job. It’s all hands on deck. You’ll see soon enough.”

    The Sergeant led the detective through a maze of rooms, work bays, rooms filled with cubicles, and hallways an onto the factory floor.

    Unprepared for the scene, Cates gasped for air.

    “Oh my god.”

    “God had nothing to do with this,” Smithfield responded.

    The first four bodies lay ten feet ahead on the stained concrete floor near a stack of wooden pallets. Face up in pools of blood, arms at their sides, shoes pointed upwards.

                “Who moved the bodies?”

                “Whoever killed them I guess,” Smithfield said.

    Smithfield continued walking.

    “Where you going?”

    “Come on. There’s more.”

    Three more bodies lay forty feet further down the aisle. Like the others, arms at sides, shoes facing up in pools of their own blood next to rolls of plastic sheeting.

    Saturday, December 5, 2015

    Michigan Carp Fishing Club Activities

    Learn to catch big fish from shore. No boat needed. Join Carp Anglers Group today.

    The video shows some of the fish we caught in 2015 at some of our club activities and events.

    Friday, December 4, 2015

    Carp Fishing 2016 Shopping List

    I am writing this post to assemble a running list of items that I have decided I "need" for next carp fishing season. I will add to it from time to time. Let me know if you see something I've left off. :-)