Maize Made Easy

The trouble with sweetcorn is that it’s not that resilient to attack from small fish when left for long periods. Corn is a great bait for bagging carp, tench and bream, but if there are loads of small fish lurking they will trash the bait long before your quarry turns up.

The way around the problem is to fish with maize. However, maize is normally used to create maize flour and when purchased is as hard as bullets. Before it can be used on the hook or as feed it needs to be carefully prepared so it’s palatable.

Here we show you how to soften up your maize and add a little oomph to the bait. To give the bait a little extra sweetness we are adding some Nutrabaits Corn Steep Liquor (CSL), but you could use Betalin or liquid molasses instead.

For this Jamie Oliver moment we’ve sourced a 2kg bag of whole French maize from Swindon bait specialist Hinders. A bag only costs £1.25 and can be brought online from .

The good news is that, unlike hemp, you can safely cook the bait at home as there’s no real smell involved, but we suggest you still use some old pans rather than your partner’s best pots!

1 Maize is as hard as nails before it’s prepared.
2 Before cooking, add a good helping of CSL.
3 Mix the uncooked maize into the CSL to help coat the bait…
4 … and leave it to soak for about 120 minutes.
5 During this time the bait starts to absorb the CSL.
6 Now cover the bait with water to double its depth.
7 Bring to the boil and simmer for about 30 minutes.
8 After about 10 minutes of cooking the bait will start to expand.
9 After half an hour the maize will have expanded… and although still quite tough should split when pinched.
10 Allow to cool and store in an airtight bait tub or bag.