Yesterday we took advantage of Whinnie’s naptime to make some playdough. We’ve done this many times before, but tried a different recipe this time.

The recipe we’ve used for years involves more ingredients (like cream of tartar…which I never use for anything else) and involves cooking.

This time we used a no-cook recipe that only needed flour, salt and water. Oh, and food coloring, unless you want flour-colored dough. 🙂

Also in the past we’ve added the color to the water and this produced a more uniform color. This time, though, I decided to encourage the boys to be more involved in the process. So I added the salt, flour and water in and did some mixing. Then we divided the lump into 2 pieces and dumped it out onto flour on the table.

So Nic and Theo each really made their own dough this time…and discovered that the process was very much like making flatbread last week.

In the beginning it was gooey and sticky and too wet, but the process of adding in more flour and working to integrate it was the whole point to the experiment.

And then once they got it to a drier consistency, we added in drops of food color. Theo chose blue, later adding some red and Nic chose green and then a few drops of yellow.

It was neat to watch the progress of the color as it was becoming integrated and dissapated throughout the dough. It was also a good way to show them what had happened to the yeast. Yeast, of course, is pretty hard to see once you put it into the dough. But food color, as it spreads out, can show them why the kneading is so important and necessary.

At this point I left the room to check on Whinnie and to leave them to continue mixing and creating. About 30 minutes later, with Whinnie up from her nap, I checked on them again. Theo’s dough was now a dark lavender, and Nic’s a beautiful spring green.

After some time mixing and creating and smushing, the dough went into bags and into the fridge. There is will be whenever they have need to work out anything physical. 🙂

Oh, and here’s the recipe:

4 cups flour
1 1/2 cups salt (I only used 1/2 cup)
2 cups water
food coloring (optional)

Additional flour for kneading; additional water if mix is too dry; lots of kneading.
Put in zipper bags and in the fridge when not in use…will last for weeks this way…