No Gum Allowed…Except Today!
Recipe Inspired by James Patterson’s Middle School, the Worst Years of My Life
by Alexie Basil
Rebellion is at the heart of this funny middle grade novel. And Rafe’s rule-breaking schemes inspired us to concoct something rebellious—homemade bubble gum! We know, it’s the classic grade school no-no. But, teachers, in the name of science, maybe you can grant a one-time exception?
Rafe’s Exceptional Gum
YOU WILL NEED
• 1 cup powdered sugar
• ⅓ cup base gum pellets (can be ordered inexpensively online)
• 2 tablespoons corn syrup
• ¼ cup Kool-Aid (for flavor—can substitute drops of liquid flavoring)
• 20 cupcake liners (more if you intend to make smaller pieces of gum, or vice versa)
• Microwave-safe bowl (disposable is preferable)
• Popsicle sticks
OPTIONAL: Food coloring
Pour ½ cup powdered sugar onto the plate. Make a small “well” in the center of the pile.
Mix the base gum pellets and corn syrup in your microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 20-second intervals, stirring in between each interval, until the mixture is fully melted.
TIP: Consider using a disposable microwave-safe bowl, as the gum is extremely difficult to remove.
Pour the base gum mixture into the powdered sugar “well.”
Mix the powdered sugar and the gum base together. Start by folding the mixture in on itself with the Popsicle sticks.
Once the mixture is cool, children can use their hands to make sure it’s fully combined. Be careful—it’s sticky!
Keep adding powdered sugar until the mixture no longer absorbs it.
Squish the gum mixture flat and dump some of the Kool-Aid on top. Fold the Kool-Aid into the gum mixture using your hands. Keep adding Kool-Aid as long as the mixture will absorb it, or to taste.
If you plan to use food coloring as well, this is the time to add it.
Roll or stretch gum mixture into a long snake until you reach your desired thickness for the gum. Then, using scissors, snip the gum into bite-size pieces!
TIP: Roll the gum mixture on the plate to help form the snake!
Lay a cupcake liner flat. Roll a single bite-size piece of gum in your extra powdered sugar, place it in the middle of the liner, roll the liner shut, and twist the ends.
Enjoy! Rafe would be proud. But remember—don’t stick gum under any desks!
This Book Is Available from Scholastic Reading Club