Cooked Play Dough

When I was a little girl, I loved playing with play dough, but my mom rarely bought the commercial stuff, and I hated the feeling of salt dough on my hands. Then we were given this recipe and all was right in my play dough world. This play dough has a nice soft texture and keeps well if stored properly. Here are some simple instructions to help you make this if you have never made a cooked play dough before.

First, the recipe:

Cooked Play Dough
(click here for a printable version of this recipe)

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup water
2 teaspoons cream of tartar (or 1 tsp cream of tartar and 1 tsp citric acid powder)
1/4 cup salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Food Coloring

In a medium saucepan, mix all ingredients except the food coloring. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. When the dough becomes harder to stir and gathers on the spoon, dump onto wax paper. Allow to cool until able to handle and then separate into two or three pieces. Add food coloring and knead until smooth and the color is fully incorporated. Store in an airtight container. Will keep about 2 weeks (longer if kept in the refrigerator).

Now, onto the tutorial

Put all ingredients (except food coloring) into a medium saucepan and mix well. It will look about like a pancake batter.

Cook over medium high heat, stirring constantly. It will begin to look lumpy. Keep stirring and cooking.

It will start to look even more lumpy, but you are not there yet. Keep cooking and stirring.

The dough will start getting very difficult to stir and will come together in a ball on the spoon. When it reaches this point it is ready.

Dump the ball of dough onto waxed paper and let it cool until it can be handled. (Your pan will be pretty coated with cooked dough and you may worry that it will never recover. No worries- just get it right into the sink, fill it with water and let is soak. That stuff will come right off.)

When the dough is sufficiently cool, separate it into two or three pieces and flatten them out. Add the desired amount of food coloring to the middle of each disk.

Pull the dough up around the food coloring. (I do this to minimize staining on your fingers from the food coloring.) Knead the dough until the color is fully incorporated and the dough is nice and soft.

Store in an airtight container and keep in the refrigerator.

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