Although it's been pointed out to me that doing jello shots at parties is more of a twenty-something activity than thirty-something, I don't care. I never did jello shots before so dammit, at our party this past weekend, I was determined to do jello shots.
The ostensible excuse was the Hallowe'en theme: orange jello shots with black "eye of newt" in the bottom. I used black tapioca pearls, the kind that are served in "pearl tea" which I love. I found packages of dried black pearls in an Asian grocery store and this worked well.
1 large package orange jello
2 c. boiling water
1 c. mandarin vodka (or other clear liquor)
1 c. cold water
1 pkg tapioca pearls (five servings)
Boil tapioca pearls -- I found it took longer than the advertised 5 minutes. Drain and rinse and distribute into little paper Dixie cups (I used about 20 but these were smallish shots). Mix boiling water and jello powder to dissolve then add liquor and cold water. Pour mixture into cups and put into the fridge for about an hour.
The paper cups are important because you have to squish the jello shot out into your mouth. Leaving the jello solid too long before serving means that the pearls get harder so don't prepare too far in advance.