12 sheets of platinum (230+ bloom) gelatin
8 water balloons
Wooden skewers, tape, and styrofoam
Nonstick cooking spray
1.Fill a bowl with ice water. Add the gelatin sheets one at a time, making sure that they are separated and not in a big clump, and submerge them in the cold water. Let them sit and soften for 10 minutes.
2.Once they are soft, remove the sheets from the water and gently squeeze out all the excess water back into the bowl. Place the wrung-out gelatin sheets and 3 tbsp of water from the bowl into a small saucepan.
3.Heat the gelatin over LOW heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until the gelatin is melted. You are not trying to get it hot, so watch it carefully and remove the pan once the gelatin is mostly melted! If it is warm, let it cool until it is no longer warm to the touch, but is still fluid. If it starts to set at any time during this process, return it to low heat briefly just until it becomes liquid again.
4.Blow up 8 water balloons to your desired size and tie them tightly. Securely tape them to long wooden skewers. Spray nonstick cooking spray on your hands, and rub your hands together until most of the oil is absorbed. Gently rub your hands on the balloons, transferring just a little oil to them—they should not be shiny or greasy at all, or the gelatin won’t stick. You should be able to do several balloons before spraying your hands again.
5.Transfer the gelatin to a small cup or bowl, narrow enough so that it will be fairly deep when you dip the balloons. Dip one in the gelatin entirely, turning it until it is nearly covered—it’s okay to leave the part near the knot/skewer uncovered. Let the excess gelatin drip back into the bowl, and once it has stopped dripping, stick the skewer in the Styrofoam board. Repeat until all of the balloons have an initial gelatin layer.