The last time I made homemade playdough, my three kids sat and played for TWO HOURS!! Two hours of no fighting, no "mom, mom, mom, mom," and no complaining. It was heavenly.
At first I was afraid to make playdough at home. I was worried that it would be messy, take too long, not turn out right, or ruin my pans. I was totally wrong. It's about the easiest thing there is to do. I tried a few recipes and found one that I love, and that's what I make every few months when our old dough gets mixed up, dried up, or just plain boring.
I let each kid pick their own color and help me make "their" dough. That way there's no fighting about who gets to help and which dough belongs to whom. Then I give it too them while it's still warm, which is especially wonderful on those cold winter days when you are stuck inside. At Valentine's Day, they tend to pick pink, red, and purples, and at St. Patrick's Day, they chose varying shades of greens and blues. It takes less than 5 minutes to put together, and is very easy to clean up. I HIGHLY recommend it if you have kids. Or even if you don't have kids. I find kneading dough to be very therapeutic.
Here is my favorite playdough recipe:
Mix the following ingredients in a saucepan:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 tsp cream of tartar
(add glitter to dry ingredients if desired)
In a separate bowl, mix the following ingredients:
2 Tbsp vegetable (I use just under 2 Tbsp so the dough is not too oily)
1 cup hot water
Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients (in saucepan) and stir. Heat over med/high **stirring constantly**. When it begins to form a ball, remove from heat, turn out onto floured surface, and knead until smooth. (You might need to wait a few minutes after putting in onto floured surface because it will be HOT). If the dough is too oily, you can just continue to knead in flour until it is the consistency you like.
I've been searching around to find things for my daughter's birthday party goodie bags. I found a few things at the local dollar store, but I really didn't want to buy a bunch of cheap toys that break and clutter up your car and house (we all have WAY too many of those already, I'm sure). So I decided to put in bubbles, a few pieces of candy, and homemade playdough. Not just ANY playdough, though. Playdough that represents two of my daughter's favorite things: Pink and Glitter.
For this batch, I made a triple recipe and added two vials of glitter from the dollar store (pink and purple). For food color I added about 10 drops of red and 3 drops of blue.
After it cooled, I cut it into quarters. Then I rolled each quarter into a log about 2-3 inches thick and 6 inches long. I then cut each log into thirds so that I would have a dozen chunks for the party guests.
I will put each chunk in a ziplock bag (though I wish I had some cuter containers for it) and add them to the rest of the goodies. I'm sure the kids will love them. My daughter is already begging me to play with it RIGHT NOW! I guess I should have made extra.....