These are a fun way to get party guests mildly intoxicated. Preparation time is just a few minutes, but you'll need a few hours of refrigeration to let the jelly set -- think of this the evening before, or at least during the morning before an evening party. Experiment with ingredients as much as you like; almost anything works here. The amounts scale easily -- make more of the same, or add a different beverage and spice to each cup at the final stage.


  • 1 sachet (preferably unflavoured) granulated gelatin
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup gin, vodka, or basically any strong drink or cocktail you fancy
  • (optionally1 vanilla pod (both the seeds, scraped out, and the husk), 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg, 1 tablespoon fruit juice concentrate, or any other favourite spice/flavouring.
  • Some boiling water (from the kettle).


Melt the sugar in a roughly equal amount of boiling water, in a small pot over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is dissolved, giving a thin syrup. Stir in the vanilla pod and seeds, or grated spice etc., if using.

In a bowl or other container, dissolve the gelatin in as much boiling water as is necessary (1/3 to 1/2 cup). Combine with the flavoured syrup, and stir.

Add the vodka, or whatever you're using, and stir.

Pour the mixture into disposable cups, narrow tequila glasses, or any container with a cross-section you'd like your cocktail jelly disks to have. Anything wider than 7 cm might mean disintegrating disks, later on... You will have about 2 cups of liquid. That means 3 disposable cups, if using those. Refrigerate for several hours (overnight is perfect), until the jelly has set.

Remove the jelly from the cups onto a board or plate. You may need to use a knife to detach it from the sides of the cups, and/or dip it in hot water, and/or tap the bottom repeatedly. Just keep trying. You should get a quivering blob. If it all falls apart, you'll need to try again, with more gelatin, or less liquids (sugar and tart fruit also require more gelatin). Now slice the jelly crosswise, to get little round disks (or whatever you cross-section is like). They should be solid enough to pick up with two fingers, without disintegrating.

Lay out (mixing kinds and colours, if you've made several) and serve.

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