In our house, play dough is worth it's weight in gold. An affirmative answer to the question "Can we play with play dough?" causes a frantic and celebratory dash to the kitchen, complete with shouts and giggles of excitement. My kids compose songs about play dough. They seriously love the stuff.
Here is my favorite recipe for homemade play dough:
1 cup white flour
1/2 cup salt
1 TBSP cream of tartar
1 TBSP oil
1 cup of water
Food coloring (optional)
Place the first 4 ingredients in a pot. Add the water and stir well. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly for about 4 minutes, until the mixture clumps and becomes very difficult to stir. Remove from heat and knead warm dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth. This is a good time to work in the food coloring, if you're using it.
Wasn't that easy?
We keep our play dough in a zip-top bag in the fridge; partly because I don't want the oil to start smelling rancid and partly because I don't want my youngest to get his hands on it and eat it. That much salt isn't good for anybody!
I divide the dough in half before kneading and make one color of play dough per child. I used to think that more colors was better, but the kids have just as much fun creating with one color and we don't have the problem of it getting mixed together and turning into a big clump of brown. Also, if each child has their own color, they don't fight over it!
I think the texture of this play dough is even better than the stuff you can buy at the store. Why not try it and let me know what you think!?