Stewed wheat

s63

Well-known member
Thought I’d start a new thread after reading Chris’s comments about using wheat in preference to hemp.

I’ve never considered this but now I’m getting serious about my roach fishing I need to look and try this once favourite old fashioned bait.

From what I’ve read so far, I can get it from a animal feed store, leave it overnight in a flask for a small amount. I can use on the hook and for loose feed.

Any tips?
 

peterjg

Well-known member
Thought I’d start a new thread after reading Chris’s comments about using wheat in preference to hemp.

I’ve never considered this but now I’m getting serious about my roach fishing I need to look and try this once favourite old fashioned bait.


From what I’ve read so far, I can get it from a animal feed store, leave it overnight in a flask for a small amount. I can use on the hook and for loose feed.

Any tips?
Wheat is a great bait. It must be prepared properly or it is worse than useless. Two ways to prepare it:
1. Soak overnight in filtered water (removes chlorine) and bring to the boil and then gently simmer for about 2 & 1/2 hours - keep your eye on the water level - by then it will have swollen a lot and changed to a sort of opaque colour.
2. Half fill a thermos flask with hemp, fill to 3/4s with boiling water leave for about 12 hours - time depends on how good or not the flask is.

Wheat will work all year but summer is best, especially if prebaited. It will take a colour and a flavour but there is no need. Usually float fished but I have caught roach, tench, bream and carp when using a mini helirig on a 6 inch hooklink.

Had carp over 40lb using tiger nuts over beds of wheat - wheat is much, much cheaper than hemp.

Must be cooked properly, nice and swollen and soft.

Pearl barley is also a good bait - even when cooked it stays very white - good with white crumb ground bait.

Good luck - don't catch too many of my roach!
 

sam vimes

Well-known member
leave it overnight in a flask for a small amount. I can use on the hook and for loose feed.
For small amounts, a big bait tub can be enough. Flash it over with boiling water. Make sure there's plenty of water because it'll soak plenty up, then leave it overnight. I've never found any need to boil or simmer it. For larger quantities, I'll do the same but in an old cool box. However, I don't tend to use it as a hookbait. I want to be able to feed it with a caty at a reasonable range, I don't want it really soft.
 

s63

Well-known member
Are there differences in the quality of wheat, should I be looking for any particular type?
 

flightliner

Well-known member
LOve creed wheat. I often used it on the Witham and Trent. I. Had my first two pound roach using it on the Witham in the sixties along with many other big ones. On the Trent it was just as deadly fishing over depth with float tackle held back.
Years later in the eighties I was often carp fishing --again often on the Trent and tho I used boillies as hookbait my loose feed was often a carpet of wheat dyed red and flavoured with scopex.
I even won a match that I was invited to fish in the early nineties using it as loosefeed with a feeder setup , a light line and two red maggots on an 18 hook and landing a carp over ten lbs, losing another then adding a Bream and a few roach for sixteen lbs.
Since then I often use it in groundbait when I'm fishing for big Bream-- I always have some in stock ready to prep.
A very good bait!!
 

mikench

Well-known member
I bought some wheat ready cooked from Decathlon last year just to give it a try. I used it on a small hook( 18 or 20) unsuccessfully so used it up as a feed. It was cheap here and your local store may stock it. It isn't as hard as barley so takes less time to soften and absorb water. I'd try the flask method.

Spelt is similar. I remember seeing an old article on FM from an amazingly polific poster called Dezza. Here it is in full.

Other than plain breadflake, one of the best summer and autumn roach baits is stewed wheat. In the old days they also called it "creed wheat".

I'm cooking stewed wheat for tomorrow so I though you might like to know how to prepare it.

Obtaining wheat is easy, go to any shop specialising in animal feeds and you should be able to get it; get the very best you can find, it's dirt cheap and 50pence worth should last you a whole season.

I'm not going to make myself very popular with tackle dealers am I?

Initially, you place a measured amount of wheat into a saucepan of cold water and let it soak for at least 12 hours.

Then you bring it to the boil and let it simmer until the skin on the wheat grains just starts to split. Each grain should be soft when you squeeze it.

Stewed wheat is very selective of big roach and works well in rivers and stillwater. However when putting in freebees, don't overdo it. wheat is very filling stuff, but when you get a shoal of roach going on it, they don't want anything else.
 
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mikench

Well-known member
I don't know how to copy or post a link to an entire thread so here's another follow on post from Dezza;

"Well I caught fish on it today.

For a single grain of wheat, a 16 is good, for a double grain, a 14. In the old days we used gilt crystal hooks which matched the colour of the wheat. I haven't seen gilt hooks in years, which is a pity.

Most of the time I use a 16 hook to a single grain of wheat.

Pearl barley is also a very cheap bait which will catch a lot of fish.

Both baits where they have not been used before, might take some time to get the fish feeding on them The name of the game is to feed little and often, and be patient.

But wheat catches big roach.

And on rivers, it often pays to use stret pegging and laying on tactics"

So a bigger hook works best which will suit me.
 

markg

Well-known member
Just a thought, what would happen if you fed both wheat and pearl barley into a swim, would it be worth it to see which one the fish got going to on the most? Or which species on which bait?
 

steve2

Well-known member
Stewed wheat a blast from the past. I remember using stacks of the stuff when prebaiting for Tench 50 years ago also taking so nice roach on it from various rivers. It must still work so might give it go again.
 

john step

Well-known member
If you use wheat for prebaiting you can use it in quantity. However if you intend to roach fish with it use it sparingly or you will overfeed them.
It is a great bait which can also take on flavours readily.

However if I use it for roach I prefer to feed hemp as a majority feed then just 3 or 4 grains in with the hemp once the hemp has got them going.

As with tares whilst hemp fishing I find wheat much less hassle to put on the hook. We used to use hemp and wheat before we discovered hemp and tares in my neck of the woods probably 50s and 60s.
 

s63

Well-known member
The idea of having a cheap bait that can easily over feed roach appeals to me. They are a real nuisance on my local estate, there are so many of them between 2 and 6 ozs and can be a real p in the a when targeting the tench and crucians, perhaps a nice portion of wheat a few feet from my swim might do the trick?

Also is it healthy for our garden birds either cooked or raw?
 

rayner

Well-known member
We used to call it cracked wheat, in my opinion wheat works far better if it has split. It goes a sort of fluffy. I used to know an old guy that preferred his wheat soft but not split, he had the idea it looked like caster when he dyed it. I preferred it white and fluffy, we all have our different ways. The beauty of our sport.
 

john step

Well-known member
The idea of having a cheap bait that can easily over feed roach appeals to me. They are a real nuisance on my local estate, there are so many of them between 2 and 6 ozs and can be a real p in the a when targeting the tench and crucians, perhaps a nice portion of wheat a few feet from my swim might do the trick?
Might work. However as the tench and crucians love it they will follow the bait! If you feed into your own swim it will attract the tench which will bully the roach away?
I know that whist roaching when the roach bites stop the bigger ones have moved in.

Also wheat tends to pick out the bigger roach. If I get plagued by small roach or rudd when tenching I put on a 10mm boile even when float fishing.
 
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rich66

Well-known member
Also is it healthy for our garden birds either cooked or raw?
According to the RSPB it’s only good for pigeons doves and pheasants.
I know the mix I get from work has a lot of wheat and the smaller birds sort through it. Or the squirrels get there first.


Ive use bird mix as a particle groundbait cooked, drained and then mixed with a sachet of Strawberry gel while warm, makes a nice sweet mix.
 

mikench

Well-known member
I was passing my local Decathlon and bought a plastic jar of blé or wheat all cooked and ready to use. It cost €3.50 for 300g. If you want some John holler.
 

Peter Jacobs

Moderator
Staff member
Going back 50 or 60 years Stewed wheat used to be sold in little bottles for hook baits in the old fashioned tackle shops I well remember using it for tench at Longwater, Hampton Court when I was about 10 or 11.

Being pretty absorbant it takes on flavour very well and can be coloured as well.
 

s63

Well-known member
Just been to my local animal feed store and got some wheat....20kgs of the stuff! Anyone passing by, do drop in and take a bag or two.

Does it still hook well after being frozen?
 

sam vimes

Well-known member
Does it still hook well after being frozen?
That will depend on how soft it ended up after your initial preparation (soaking/boiling/simmering etc). I doubt many roach anglers would want it so far gone, but I'm not averse to leaving it to soak until it just starts to ferment a little. You'll know it's there when the malty smell gets that bit more pungent. If it's frozen at that point, it can go further when on the bank. Refreezing at this point may see it end up too soft for anything other than being spodded. Carpers, and some other specimen anglers are not remotely averse to using seed types, including wheat, way past the stage that many would consider to be off!
 

Alan Tyler

Well-known member
Might that be the answer to s63's problem? Roach experts always used to bang on about the importance of fresh bait - add a bit of yeast to your wheat (once its cooled down) and keep it warmish till it gets that brewery scent and see if it deters ol' Redfin. It's most unlikely to deter carp (and, dare I name them, bream)!
 
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