When you start looking around for fish bait recipes you'll be amazed at - and often amused by - the assortment of "trusted" "secret" and "sounds-gory-but-it-works" fish bait recipes you will come across!
If you want to learn how to prepare your own recipes, then get ready for some often gruesome kithen work... not to mention the aromas you will have to contend with.
Of course, if you want to avoid all of the preparation in the kitchen, you can buy commercially prepared fish bait recipes, but this can add quite a bit to your weekend fishing budget!
There is no shortage of advice available about fish bait recipes. First you have to decide what kind of fish you're aiming to catch, as they all have different tastes.
The smell of the bait is often very important. For instance, river salmon is known for a keen sense of smell to go with their eyesight, and you should try to take advantage of this when preparing your bait.
The smell of bait also fades in the water, so you should have enough bait to be able to change your bait often to keep that irresistable smell hanging and drifting around there in the water.
California salmon fishers recommend using tuna balls. Canned tuna in oil or water can be placed in a mesh bag and tied shut when used below a float. Chopped herring or sardines make great bagged baits too.
Some fish bait recipes are really very simple. For instance, if you're after bottom-feeding fish like carp and catfish, you can simply use bread, small pieces of cheese, and even canned corn.
However, the following doughballs recipe for carp is often used:
You start by mixing 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of yellow cornmeal, and 1 teaspoon of sugar. You then take a 1-quart container of water and pour just enough of it into the mixture to make a heavy dough. Then roll the dough into balls of 1/2 inch to 1 inch. Now you mix the rest of the water with 1 cup of molasses and pour it into a pan. Bring the molasses and water to a boil, and when the mixture is boiling, you drop in a couple of doughballs. Cook them for 2 to 3 minutes.
Many homemade fish bait recipes feature the use of marshmallows to assist in floating the bait, and some belive the color also helps to attract the fish.
Here follows a basic fish bait recipe using marshmallows:
Fill a bowl with 1/4 cup garlic powder and a small cup with water. Put about 5 miniature marshmallows in the water and make sure that they are soaked. Then put them in the bowl of garlic powder and stir them around so the powder coats them evenly. Put them in a jar for later use.
Many websites feature discussion forums where the detail of fish bait recipe preparation can be found. Here you will often find people who spill the beans about great family traditions and "secret" recipies that never fail...