One Hundred Percent EDIBLE Googly Eyes!

Nilla is watching you.Googly FSM
After more than a year of painstaking directed research by our Experimental Foods Division, we have finally achieved one of our most important longstanding goals: the production of edible googly eyes. Like many other great inventions, it seems almost simple in retrospect, but in this write up we walk through the process and show you how to make your own.

Capsules   Capsules-2

Cap

To begin with, we need a food-grade rigid transparent dome that will form the outer visual shell of the googly eyes. Empty gelatin capsules like these slide apart easily and come with one such dome on each end.

You can get capsules like these in bulk at all kinds of “natural” and “health food” stores– or even at many grocery stores in the section where dietary supplements are sold. There is of course a huge selection online– you can even get them in different colors and flavors. Capsules come in range of sizes; we suggest starting with size 00 or so to get a good dome.

Note: Vegetarians will observe that gelatin is an animal product. Gelatin-free capsules that perform similarly are usually available in the same places as regular capsules but tend to cost a bit more.

Illustration only

While the gelatin capsules have a dome on each end, they have a lot of space in between that we really don’t need. The photo above illustrates how much of each end we want to keep: the domed part plus a few millimeters. As it turns out, you cannot use the scissors to actually cut it there– it will crack or suffer permanent creases, making it useless for our application.

IMG_4673.JPG

Instead, using fine-point scissors, make one continuous cut from the opening to remove the excess capsule material. This actually works very well and does not cause undue stress to the dome that we want to keep.

Cutdown caps
The finished transparent domes, cut down to size.
Giant sprinkles   Sprinkles!

Next, we’re going to need rolling pupils for our eyes, and these fit the bill perfectly. These are Wilton Jumbo Rainbow Nonpareils, one brand of *giant* round sprinkles a couple of millimeters across. Our big surprise: these actually taste pretty good– they’re flavored candy. The downside is that we only really want dark pupils, so there’s some fishing around to find them in the assortment..

Suggested substitutes: other brands of round sprinkles and cake decors, as well as Nerds candy (look for the occasional round pieces). While you might be tempted to try using flat “confetti” sprinkles or similar types, we actually found them to be quite unsuitable– they get stuck in all kinds of unexpected ways instead of rolling freely.

Whoppers   Whopper ChopperPrepare hemisphere   The incision

Next we need a solid substrate that serves as the back surface of the googly eyes– the whites of the eyes. The substrate needs to be sturdy, so that it can support the rest of the eyes, light in color, and completely dry and free of oil. At the same time, it needs to be soft enough that we can press the gelatin capsules into it.

Our substrate of choice is (are?) Whoppers, although some other things will work as well. To use the Whoppers, first cut them in half with a chef’s knife. Then, using a (virginal) half-capsule as a tool, press an indentation into the semirigid center of the Whopper.

Sprinkle, cap   InsertFirst eye   Whoppers Watchin you.

Place one of the round “pupil” sprinkles in the cut-off capsule dome, and press it into the indentation made in the Whopper hemisphere. Press it in deeply enough– several millimeters– that it will not fall out, but not so deeply that it restricts the motion of the sprinkle pupil. Some care is required– the substrate can shatter if you push too hard. Special worry about using this particular substrate: the outer, chocolate-like coating will begin to melt if you handle it too long.

Once the capsule dome and pupil are in place, test your new googly eyes, and make sure that the ball rolls freely in the dome. That’s it! You’ve made edible googly eyes!

Nilla

Another substrate that works– but not quite as well– is a medium-soft cookie. This “Nilla” wafer has a pair of working edible googly eyes on it. The cookie is a little bit too soft for this application, and makes it harder to manage, but it is indeed possible. Other cookies may be too rigid (biscotti), dense (shortbread), or greasy (chocolate chip).


Applications

It has been clear for some time that a great many foods are improved by the judicious application of googly eyes. Obviously the one flaw in that scheme– up to now– has been that the foods were no longer edible. Removing this restriction opens a world of possibilities. As with many new technologies, the applications are nearly endless, and only time will tell whether this development ever sees its true potential.

As one example, we present a simple recipe:

Flying Spaghetti Monster Treats, featuring edible working googly eyes.

Mallows   Chow mein noodlesRamen   Excellent Flour Stick

The basic idea is that we make rice krispy treats, omitting the rice crispies and instead using some tasty dried noodles. Now, rice krispy treats without the rice is actually just marshmallows and butter– an effective and edible glue that can be used for all kinds of purposes.

You can crib the butter/marshmallow proportions from the original source or from whatever box is handy– no two of these seem to be exactly the same. Anyway, melt a bunch of marshmallows with a little butter to make the glue. To that, add some small pieces of precooked dry noodles. Spoon the resulting mess out onto parchment paper, and decorate as needed.

(Vegetarians: Lots of other good ways to do this– start with a general-purpose haystack cookie recipe and go from there.)

The “classic” choice for this sort of thing is to use chow mein noodles– already used to make a few different kinds of no-bake cookies. Of course, considering our theme, it makes sense to instead use ramen noodles. Ramen noodles have beens successfully employed with sweets lately, and it seems like a fine idea. (Remember to omit the flavor packet.) We used another type of dry asian noodle, beautifully labeled “Excellent Flour Stick,” for ours.

Eyestalks

Mounting the googly eyes to the eyestalks presents a bit of a challenge, since the “rice krispy” glue does not set immediately, and the eyes kept falling down. Instead, dip the eyestalks in the glue and place them flat on a piece of parchment paper. Then, set the eyes flat on the eyestocks to cool and bond. Later these eyestalk can be added easily to the top of the noodly blobs.
FSM Treats!
The crowning detail of course is to add the meatballs– in this case Cocoa Puffs. And we’re done– one hundred percent edible Flying Spaghetti Monster treats with working googly eyes.
So, what can you make with edible googly eyes? As always, action shots are welcome in the Evil Mad Science Auxiliary.

EmailFacebookTwitterGoogle+tumblrPinterestRedditStumbleUpon

59 thoughts on “One Hundred Percent EDIBLE Googly Eyes!

  1. This is the most amazing thing I have ever seen! You win the Internets.

    Will they travel? Can you start selling them ready-made on eBay?

    • The eyes seem remarkably robust. For better or worse, we aren’t licensed to sell food, so don’t expect to be able to buy these from us anytime soon. I bet someone else will start making them commercially, however.


      Windell H. Oskay
      drwho(at)evilmadscientist.com
      http://www.evilmadscientist.com/

  2. I’m not really an active pastafarian, but I have a nagging doubt that you may have just committed kind of terrible heresy.

    The FSM did mention something about "not making raven images", but outside of the 11th Century Tower of London that’s never been a major issue – so it’s possible there was a typo in the sacred scripts. (A missing "’;" is often a typo in my scripts.)

    Anyway, I’m not sure you have HIS noodly appendage depicted quite right – would be it possible to have an update?

    • I’m not aware of any post-my-departure changes, but the OBJECT of Pastafanarianism used to be to eat His likeness–thus the pasta eating. I’d say ask Bobby, but he’s busy photographing tacos and not ever working for a living…

    • From my recollections, the FSM didn’t actually leave any commandments anyway. Just some suggestions.

  3. Just Stumbled upon this. Very cool indeed! :) Too bad it’s just a SM, since there doesn’t seem to be much F in it. Cudos all the same! =)

  4. These are great. I bet you can use up the lighter colored candy beads adding eyes to chocolate truffles…
    The less aggressive experimenter may find that they already own some appropriate clear capsuals that happen to be filled with some innocuous vitamin or supplement or something; I found some "ginger capsules" (used to prevent motion sickness, supposedly) that worked fine; Just take them apart and roll between your fingers to empty them of the original contents.
    (this would probably be a REALLY BAD IDEA to do with capsules containing actual prescription medications, though.)

  5. Have you tried making a ‘glue’ backing for the amazing googly eyes out of meringue? If I remember correctly, it’s not greasy and dries to a nice, firm consistency. It is possible that one could even construct the eyes on wax paper or the like, and apply them later to whatever surface presented itself…

    • Meringue should work very well and be an excellent substitute for the whoppers. In order to press the capsules in, they would have to have some thickness to them, so an array of little meringue buttons should be in order.

      In our many experiments into how to make these we actually tried a lot of other ways. One of the major efforts was making the backs out of hard icing on sheets of wax paper. (We also made pupils this way, as dots on wax paper.) But meringue is a much better idea because it has the right consistency for the job.

      On the other hand, one of our requirements was that this project be as easy as possible– while we do make meringues, not everyone does, and malted milk balls are pretty easy to find.


      Windell H. Oskay
      drwho(at)evilmadscientist.com
      http://www.evilmadscientist.com/

      • I’ve managed to generalize the procedure — see http://www.flickr.com/photos/jpolowin/2834047147/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/jpolowin/2833911483/ . It’s more time-consuming, but not much more difficult — the additional components needed are "royal icing" (i.e., icing which gets hard when it dries) and round flat candy cake decorations, slightly smaller in diameter than the gel capsule.

        The advantage is that you can construct the eyes on wax paper, then stick them onto virtually anything with a bit more of the icing. It doesn’t matter if the surface is hard, uneven, sticky, etc.

        • That’s actually how we first approached the problem– we made dozens with royal icing on waxed paper. However, we found that there was often too much moisture inside– or if the icing was still wet– the pupil would stick to the back wall and didn’t rattle around. (Fail!)

          We finally decided to *not* publish that design because it was much harder to actually get the eyeballs to rattle around… and so we finally figured out the "whoppers" design, which didn’t have that problem and takes much less time to make.

          However, looks like you’ve had better luck than we did– your muppephones look great!


          Windell H. Oskay
          drwho(at)evilmadscientist.com
          http://www.evilmadscientist.com/

          • That’s the benefit of the cake decoration — it separates the candy ball from the icing. One needs to be a little bit careful to keep things centred so that icing doesn’t get inside, but there’s a bit of a "safety gap" between the round candy ball and the flat decoration.

  6. well, this made me laugh. what an amaxing use of food, those eyes are just creepy!

    great use, must remember this next time I entertain a small person .

  7. i am glad to see some one is using the FSM in their creations, may non stale beer and non-dieased strippers be with you at death

    RAmen

  8. I think a small dab of melted white or dark chocolate will work for the back if you didn’t use the whoppers or nilla waffer

  9. I think a small dab of melted white or dark chocolate will work for the back if you didn’t use the whoppers or nilla waffer

  10. Can you use Kix instead of Whoppers? I’m looking for a milk-free, egg-free, nut-free, peanut-free, chocolate-free substrate to poke the googles of the googly eyes into.

    Thoughts anyone?

    No, I don’t have a kid with allergies – I have the allergies! :)

  11. This is absolutely genius! I am obsessed with Googly Eyes and put them everywhere I go! I can’t wait to try this out. I also just made an IPhone app for adding Googly Eyes to any picture! http://bit.ly/8cYcKw I figured you might want to check it out too! Happy Googlying :)

    • I salute your genius! But the cute little bugger’s almost too divine looking to eat.

  12. This is full of win and awesome. You must be very short, for you have clearly been Touched by His Noodly Appendage.

  13. I feel like it should be acceptable as long as you are in full pirate regalia when creating and consuming His Noodliness

  14. This is brilliant, I know that the edible googly eyes will be a massive hit with my children. These could be used to create so many fun food treats. I’d love to post this on my site http://www.betterparenting.com but I suspect that some of my audience might be offended by the Flying Spaghetti Monster (and all that he represents).

    Any chance you’ve made another creature with the same eyes that I might be able to feature in a "fun for kids" post?

    Thanks.

  15. This is hillarious!! Very good Halloween idea! I’m writing from bulbinblue.com, a non-profit website for creative ideas and crafts. We’d love to feature your tutorial in our upcoming Halloween section. If you are interested, please e-mail us at blueteam@bulbinblue.com
    Sincerely,
    The Blue Team

  16. Once you’ve trimmed the ends off the gelatin capsules . . . couldn’t you just stick two ends back together (with a sprinkle inside) and have a roughly spherical eyeball? Then you could just shove the sphere into frosting or whatever . . ..

  17. I can’t believe I didn’t think of that — gelatin capsules — of course!!!! I am SO excited, can’t wait to try these on so many foods that are waiting to be anthropomorphized! -Portia

  18. Hi i have a question. I want to do this as part of a mad scientist party with about 24-27 kids… the instructions here and photos are really cool and seem easy enough…but do you know about how much it will make? i feel like i should make triple it?

  19. or a really GREAT idea!!! would make those boring holidays with the in-laws a lot more interesting

Comments are closed.