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Baker's Craft Dough

Author/Submitted by: Cheaper and Better, Shared by Sherilyn Schamber
Servings: 1
Categories: Household / Information / Play Dough

Ingredients:
4  cups  Flour
1  cup  Salt
1 1/2  cups  Water

-----OPTIONAL INGREDIENTS-----
1  tablespoon  Powdered alum
1  tablespoon  Cooking oil
1/4  teaspoon  Food coloring
1/4  teaspoon  Oil of cloves or peppermint, extract

-----FOR FINISHING-----
    Acrylic paints
1  spray  Acrylic fixative
    Clear or orange shellac

Directions:
1. ** Pliable and simple to make and use. Powdered alum retards spoilage and cooking oil makes dough a little easier to work with.

2. Mix together flour, salt, and alum if you are using it. With a big wooden spoon, slowly stir in the water, oil, coloring, and scent. Keep mixing until dough follows the spoon around the bowl and then knead with your hands until smooth. The initial kneading will only take a minute or two to get the dough going and to make it pliable. After that, you will knead as you work with smaller pieces and the dough will stay soft. Store dough in the refrigerator until ready to use. It will remain in good condition for up to 4 weeks. Let it warm to room temperature before using.

3. To Use: Generously flour work surface and pinch off just enough dough to mold with. Leave the rest in a plastic bag until needed. Fill a small bowl with water to use as glue when you want to stick 2 pieces together. When you have made an item you want to keep, place it on a floured cookie sheet.

4. Bake 250F, at least 1 hr. Baking time varies considerably depending on the thickness of the object. It's a good idea to check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the thickest part of the item. If you think your ornaments are getting too brown, cover them with foil, turn down the oven and compensate by cooking a bit longer. After the item is completely dry, you can paint it with acrylic paints and then either paint it with shellac or spray it with several coats of acrylic fixative.

5. Ideas: Successfully used for homey-looking Christmas ornaments. Do children's hand-prints. 1/2" thick layer of dough. Force dough through a garlic press for a bird's nest, hair, animal fur, spaghetti. Just remember to glue the strand together as you go with water. Add teeny little eggs to a nest or roll out meatballs for a bowl of spaghetti. Make a bread basket, bagel, or pretend muffins. Bread basket: Roll out and cut thick strips of dough. Drape several, close together across an inverted, heavily floured loaf pan or baking dish. Weave strips in the opposite direction through the original ones. Create a lattice work design and finish off edges as if you were creating a fancy pie. Bake your creation, pan and all, in the oven and lift the basket off the pan when it is completely cool.

6. Hints: To add a hanger to Christmas ornaments: Push a paper clip almost all the way into the top of the ornament. To create a hole for threading a pendant, take a cocktail straw and carefully drill out the hole just before you are ready to bake. 40 oz Big savings. Comparison is to modeling clay.

My Note: No good for ornaments; they puff when baked.


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