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Thread: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

  1. #1
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    Default Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    Iím trying to make my own blocks because Oliverís a very picky eater and I was going to see if he liked these better then the HHB. The mixture was really really sticky. They are still in the oven but they look like clay. Iím not sure what I did wrong. I just donít want to order more vitamin mix and it happen again and Iím wasting my money. Please help!! This is the recipe I used.


    Quote Originally Posted by SammysMom View Post
    Maybe change which nuts etc to make it more appealing to your squirrel?
    Homemade Squirrel Block Recipe
    (Revised 11/01/11)
    Makes approximately a 4-week supply for a 1-pound squirrel.

    Preheat oven to 205 degrees Fahrenheit

    Dry ingredients:
    80 g Pure Whey Protein Isolate for adult formula (for growth formula, use 160 g).
    130 g finely ground nuts (any kind; peanuts, pecans, or almonds work well)
    1/3 cup wheat flour (optional)
    1 tsp aluminum-free baking powder
    1 package (45 g) Henry's Healthy Vita-Mins*

    Wet ingredients:
    1 whole egg
    1 tsp vanilla or almond extract (optional)
    1/2 cup water, or a little more, as needed (this is for growth formula only; do not add water to the adult formula unless the dough is too dry when mixed)

    Instructions:
    Place dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.

    Add all the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix with a fork until dough sticks together. It will be fairly dry, like pie crust dough. Wearing gloves or with your bare hands (oiled), press the dough down and then start to knead it. Once the dough forms a ball, place it onto a lightly greased surface and knead a few more times until smooth and uniform in color. Roll dough out into a roll or flatten into a square, and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake for 1 1/2 hours. While still warm, cut into 60 pieces with a sharp knife

    Allow the blocks to cool for at least 2 hours. Then place in zip-lock bags and store them in the fridge or freezer. They will keep in the fridge for several weeks. They will keep in the freezer for several months (unopened and with as much air as possible removed from the bag before sealing). Some squirrels enjoy eating them cold or frozen, but you can also put a cold block into the microwave for about 5-10 seconds to warm it up.

    Feed 1-3 per day. Different squirrels will have different energy requirements.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    This is what the look like.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    They look ok to me!
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    Actually, that IS the recipe for HHB if I'm not mistaken. I have made them a few times. It's the recipe for the Adult formula. My flyers won't eat those. They prefer the Picky Eater block so I just buy them.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    Lillidukes has a terriffic recipe.
    Squirrel Blocks
    100 grams Henry's Vitamins
    400 grams Whey Protein Isolate Unflavored
    (I buy 10lbs at a time from All Star Health)
    3 eggs
    3 tsp baking powder (aluminum free)
    1 pound of pecan halves
    1/2 blended to pecan meal
    1/2 beaten to small pieces with hammer
    1 tiny bag of almond slivers (hanging with nuts in baking part of grocery store)
    water

    Beat eggs
    Add 3/4 cup water
    Vitamins and baking powder
    then add nuts
    at this point you have slimy goo
    I do it this way to insure vitamins will be in every block
    then add whey protein
    mix throughly until it kinda all sticks together
    you can add more water if too dry or more whey if too wet
    I use a pyrex baking dish coated with spray or coconut oil
    bake at 205 degrees for 90 to 100 minutes (single would be 90)
    Cut while hot or you have one huge block

    I like the simplicity of this recipe. I cut it in half and that will feed my guys for several days and they get more than two if they want them. I add extra nuts to make up for limiting the quantity to two. The final dough IS thick and sticky. I add a little extra water. Donít bake over 205. I bake my blocks at 200 to preserve the integrity of the vitamins.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    [QUOTE=Chickenlegs;1283504]Lillidukes has a terriffic recipe.
    Squirrel Blocks
    100 grams Henry's Vitamins
    400 grams Whey Protein Isolate Unflavored
    (I buy 10lbs at a time from All Star Health)
    3 eggs
    3 tsp baking powder (aluminum free)
    1 pound of pecan halves
    1/2 blended to pecan meal
    1/2 beaten to small pieces with hammer
    1 tiny bag of almond slivers (hanging with nuts in baking part of grocery store)
    water

    Beat eggs
    Add 3/4 cup water
    Vitamins and baking powder
    then add nuts
    at this point you have slimy goo
    I do it this way to insure vitamins will be in every block
    then add whey protein
    mix throughly until it kinda all sticks together
    you can add more water if too dry or more whey if too wet
    I use a pyrex baking dish coated with spray or coconut oil
    bake at 205 degrees for 90 to 100 minutes (single would be 90)
    Cut while hot or you have one huge block

    I like the simplicity of this recipe. I cut it in half and that will feed my guys for several days and they get more than two if they want them. I add extra nuts to make up for limiting the quantity to two. The final dough IS thick and sticky. I add a little extra water. Donít bake over 205. I bake my blocks at 200 to preserve the integrity of the vitamins.[/QUOT

    I baked them at 205 but that was another thing they were extremely dry and hard. I baked them for less then what it said because I could tell they were dry. Any suggestions?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    Wheat flour makes them crumble so I donít use it
    You can add an extra egg to make them softer
    Iíve tried many different variations over time and found
    that keeping it simple works best when feeding a lot of squirrels
    Scurry Central
    living and loving squirrel

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    And that recipe is my go to. Overcook em or undercook em. Add a little this orthat. Every time I make blocks I thank Lisa cause they are GOOD. I had to put the kabash on a friendofhubbys who kept raiding my blocks. Not that they wouldnít be better than most anything else he ate, but those blocks are for my squirrels!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chickenlegs View Post
    Lillidukes has a terriffic recipe.
    Squirrel Blocks
    100 grams Henry's Vitamins
    400 grams Whey Protein Isolate Unflavored
    (I buy 10lbs at a time from All Star Health)
    3 eggs
    3 tsp baking powder (aluminum free)
    1 pound of pecan halves
    1/2 blended to pecan meal
    1/2 beaten to small pieces with hammer
    1 tiny bag of almond slivers (hanging with nuts in baking part of grocery store)
    water

    Beat eggs
    Add 3/4 cup water
    Vitamins and baking powder
    then add nuts
    at this point you have slimy goo
    I do it this way to insure vitamins will be in every block
    then add whey protein
    mix throughly until it kinda all sticks together
    you can add more water if too dry or more whey if too wet
    I use a pyrex baking dish coated with spray or coconut oil
    bake at 205 degrees for 90 to 100 minutes (single would be 90)
    Cut while hot or you have one huge block

    I like the simplicity of this recipe. I cut it in half and that will feed my guys for several days and they get more than two if they want them. I add extra nuts to make up for limiting the quantity to two. The final dough IS thick and sticky. I add a little extra water. Don’t bake over 205. I bake my blocks at 200 to preserve the integrity of the vitamins.
    For how many squirrels is this recipe?

    The monthly “dose” of Henry’s vitamins for 1 squirrel is 33g. And 80 g of protein for 1 sq as well.
    In this modified recipe 100g of vitamins is for 3 sqs (100 divided by 33)? But then almost 130g + of protein per sq? (If 400g of protein divided by 3). That’s way too much protein for one squirrel, too much protein may be heavy on kidneys etc.
    and looks like way too much nuts.
    People do tend to modify recipes here slightly, but this seems way too off, imho.

    If you have a flying squirrel, then they get extra protein, but how much protein per day they need - flyer ppl will know.

    The original recipe works just fine - it's very simple: 33g of vits, 80g of protein, 130g of nuts, 1 egg, baking powder and optional flour/oat bran. That's it - for one sq for one month. Imho it's better to add if not flour, then at least oat bran or something because without that it's like baked protein with nuts, may not be very palatable. But again - some ppl used the recipe without the optional flour and their sqs preferred it that way.

    The pic you posted above - they look just fine as well.

    It’s important to keep in mind that, 1st off, if a sq never ate them, it will take some time to get used to; 2ndly squirrels tend to be picky and it’s almost always a battle of wills; 3rdly, sqs go through phases, and they alternate periods of eating well with periods of not eating well, they tend to eat the least in late Fall- early winter due to hard-wired instincts.
    If necessary, it is totally fine to turn the prepared block into balls, but imho modifying the original recipe so drastically may not be a good idea as too much protein isn’t good (unless it’s flyers who have somewhat different protein needs).

    A few words on the recipe posted above from 2011. It’s slightly old: right now one-month supply of vitamins is 33g, no longer 45g.
    Wheat flour is optional and can be replaced with oat bran, buckwheat flour etc.

    One thing - unless you are making it for babies, you don’t want to put too much water. As it says in the recipe, water isn’t added to the adult recipe. However, if you replace wheat flour with oat bran, which is higher in fiber, you may need to add a bit of water because whole grain/high fiber flours absorb more liquid. Also depending on your altitude you may have to add or not add water. So that’s one thing you can experiment with to find what works for you.

    If you feel your batter is too crumbly, start adding little water, say, a TBS at a time: add one and see if it helps, if it doesn’t, then add another. Too much water may make it feel like wet clay. If your batter felt very, very, very sticky, like wet clay sticky (or dough that's too sticky) - most likely, too much water. It shouldn't be that "wet dough/clay" type of sticky. Of course, it will be somewhat sticky when you first start mixing it like any batter, but not excessively and then the initial stickiness goes away. As you need it, the ground nuts will release oil, so it may get oily, but not wet. Maybe, too much water was the problem that made it feel very sticky for you?

    But even if you put too much water, that won’t change the resultant blocks’ nutritional content, ie., they are still nutritionally good. Just to make them more palatable to him, you can grind them into a ball, but keep additions to the minimum so as not to mask the block taste too much because you want him to get used to it.
    The basic idea for balls: grind block finely, add some moisture (some use unsweetened baby food, but plain water will do) to make it the consistency of damp sand, then add something nutty: either finely ground nuts or natural nut butter. You want both moisture and nutty substance just enough for the ground block to hold together and add some extra nutty flavour. If you make them a few times, you’ll find the ratio that works for you.
    What some ppl do is with each batch of block they gradually reduce the nutty filler to make the sq get used to the block taste.
    Just if you do decide to grind them into balls, keep track of how many blocks you grind so as to keep the daily block requirement (2 HHBs for a grey).

    So, imho however you decide to experiment with the original recipe, it may be best to keep the vitamins and protein at the suggested quantities of 33g and 80g respectively per one squirrel per month.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    PS if you do decide to use oat bran - that's something to experiment with as well. Oat bran flakes, as tiny as they are, tend to be more course than your regular flour. Some sqs like that, some don't. So, depending on your little guy's preferences, maybe you'll need to grind oat bran in a coffee grinder or something. But again - it all depends on what he'll like.

    Also, personally, i wouldn't suggest buying whey protein isolate from the stores that sell whey protein isolate for athletes and such. Very often whey protein isolate, intended for athletes/fitness ppl, is often spiked with some extra stuff, like steroid-hormone-type of things that enhance the desired results. But those extras aren't always listed, because this area isn't as strictly regulated as it should be and manufacturers aren't obligated to list everything that goes into it. It can also depend on a brand, of course, but one needs to know those whey protein brands well enough to know what's best and more reliable (and even then there isn't guarantee). So, imho it may be safer buying henry's whey protein. Buying in bulk from henry's - both vitamins and whey protein - is fairly reasonable and affordable for one squirrel (when ppl feed dozens of squirrels that's a different story, but for one or two squirrels buying henry's vits and protein in bulk is affordable). Bulk package of Henry's vitamins and a bulk package of henry's protein will last roughly 5-6months for one sq.

    and correction for my first post about the recipe: it should read "as you kneed it, the nuts will release oil ..." (auto correct as usual). couldn't correct the post as the time slot for correcting expired

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Making blocks! What did I do wrong?!?

    Quote Originally Posted by astra View Post
    For how many squirrels is this recipe?

    The monthly ďdoseĒ of Henryís vitamins for 1 squirrel is 33g. And 80 g of protein for 1 sq as well.
    In this modified recipe 100g of vitamins is for 3 sqs (100 divided by 33)? But then almost 130g + of protein per sq? (If 400g of protein divided by 3). Thatís way too much protein for one squirrel, too much protein may be heavy on kidneys etc.
    and looks like way too much nuts.
    People do tend to modify recipes here slightly, but this seems way too off, imho.

    If you have a flying squirrel, then they get extra protein, but how much protein per day they need - flyer ppl will know.

    The original recipe works just fine - it's very simple: 33g of vits, 80g of protein, 130g of nuts, 1 egg, baking powder and optional flour/oat bran. That's it - for one sq for one month. Imho it's better to add if not flour, then at least oat bran or something because without that it's like baked protein with nuts, may not be very palatable. But again - some ppl used the recipe without the optional flour and their sqs preferred it that way.

    The pic you posted above - they look just fine as well.

    Itís important to keep in mind that, 1st off, if a sq never ate them, it will take some time to get used to; 2ndly squirrels tend to be picky and itís almost always a battle of wills; 3rdly, sqs go through phases, and they alternate periods of eating well with periods of not eating well, they tend to eat the least in late Fall- early winter due to hard-wired instincts.
    If necessary, it is totally fine to turn the prepared block into balls, but imho modifying the original recipe so drastically may not be a good idea as too much protein isnít good (unless itís flyers who have somewhat different protein needs).

    A few words on the recipe posted above from 2011. Itís slightly old: right now one-month supply of vitamins is 33g, no longer 45g.
    Wheat flour is optional and can be replaced with oat bran, buckwheat flour etc.

    One thing - unless you are making it for babies, you donít want to put too much water. As it says in the recipe, water isnít added to the adult recipe. However, if you replace wheat flour with oat bran, which is higher in fiber, you may need to add a bit of water because whole grain/high fiber flours absorb more liquid. Also depending on your altitude you may have to add or not add water. So thatís one thing you can experiment with to find what works for you.

    If you feel your batter is too crumbly, start adding little water, say, a TBS at a time: add one and see if it helps, if it doesnít, then add another. Too much water may make it feel like wet clay. If your batter felt very, very, very sticky, like wet clay sticky (or dough that's too sticky) - most likely, too much water. It shouldn't be that "wet dough/clay" type of sticky. Of course, it will be somewhat sticky when you first start mixing it like any batter, but not excessively and then the initial stickiness goes away. As you need it, the ground nuts will release oil, so it may get oily, but not wet. Maybe, too much water was the problem that made it feel very sticky for you?

    But even if you put too much water, that wonít change the resultant blocksí nutritional content, ie., they are still nutritionally good. Just to make them more palatable to him, you can grind them into a ball, but keep additions to the minimum so as not to mask the block taste too much because you want him to get used to it.
    The basic idea for balls: grind block finely, add some moisture (some use unsweetened baby food, but plain water will do) to make it the consistency of damp sand, then add something nutty: either finely ground nuts or natural nut butter. You want both moisture and nutty substance just enough for the ground block to hold together and add some extra nutty flavour. If you make them a few times, youíll find the ratio that works for you.
    What some ppl do is with each batch of block they gradually reduce the nutty filler to make the sq get used to the block taste.
    Just if you do decide to grind them into balls, keep track of how many blocks you grind so as to keep the daily block requirement (2 HHBs for a grey).

    So, imho however you decide to experiment with the original recipe, it may be best to keep the vitamins and protein at the suggested quantities of 33g and 80g respectively per one squirrel per month.
    Astra that's a 3 month supply for 1 squirrel. A 1 week
    supply for my house.
    Scurry Central
    living and loving squirrel

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