Sunday, April 28, 2013

Mimi's Play Dough

I came across a large canister filled with flour, and me being me struggled to just throw it out. Why throw it out you ask? Well, if I had to take a guess the flour in this canister was at least 6 years old and it was just plain ol’ all-purpose white flour which I don’t use anymore anyway, so…throwing it seemed to be the right option.  Well I sat staring at the flour thinking of all the things I could use it for (I even sent texts my friends to see if they could use it for anything), since it was too old to use for food my mind was instantly thinking crafts.  I thought of homemade modge podge, paper mache, salt dough…then I looked over at my son, sitting at the kitchen table sifting through his poor selection of play dough. My mind was made up…PLAY DOUGH! And of course my little helper was eager to help.

Now you can go on Pinterest and find oodles of different play dough recipes, but I am sticking with my mom’s recipe that she used when I was a kid. (I posted something a few years ago, you can see it here.) I am Gluten-Free, my son is not, and so making the dough using regular flour wasn't a concern for me. BUT, if you child is Gluten-Free then I would substitute the flour; use rice or even GF oat flour. I personally haven’t tried it using other flours but I would assume it would work fine.  (Here is a site called Creative with Kids that shares her gluten free play dough recipe.)

Mimi’s Play Dough

2 cups flour
1 cup salt
4 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tbsp. oil
2 cups water
Food coloring*

Mix all the ingredients in a large pot. Stir and cook over medium heat until the mix pulls away from the sides. Constantly stir! This is an arm workout.  (*If you want to have all one color, add the food coloring to the water and mix in while heating.  If you want multiple colors, once you take the dough out of the pot, divide the dough and knead the food coloring in.)

Once the dough is formed, put on wax paper and knead until smooth.  Store in an airtight container (nothing metal), you could even use old empty play dough containers.

He wanted multiple colors, and we were short on food coloring so the only color he wanted that he wasn't able to get was purple; maybe next time.  We added the food coloring in at the kneading stage, and I let him do the kneading.  You may need to add more coloring as you go if you want a more vibrant color.  

Now go play!