23 December 2007

Holiday craft: Bread dough ornaments

There's still a bit of time for holiday crafts now that vacation is underway! Margaret shared her recipe for homemade dough ornaments:

The holidays bring out the crafty in me! Here's a recipe for bread dough ornaments.  I still have some
from when I was a kid, and they go up on the tree every year.  This year, my daughter can add some of hers.  They're a fun afternoon project, just don't try the dough.  It tastes terrible!

BREAD DOUGH ORNAMENTS

4 cups white flour
1 cup salt
1 1/2 cups water
paint or food coloring

Mix flour and salt in bowl until and smooth. Add 1/2 cup of water and mix for a few minutes. Slowly add remaining water.  Gather the dough in a ball and work in any ingredients left at the bottom of the bowl.
Knead dough for five minutes. If you want to make something like candy cane twists, you can knead red food coloring into half the dough.

Roll out dough and cut into shapes with cookie cutters, place on cookie tray lined with parchment paper or foil.  If you want to hang them, put a hole through the top.  Bake in a 300 degree F (120-150 degree C) oven until hard (5-15 minutes depending on size). Let cool and then paint with acrylic paint. 

Katherine adds:

You can also use your own homebrew playdough (plus food coloring, if you're so inclined).  If so, just let the ornaments air-dry before painting (don't bake them!).  They will be more brittle, but also less fussy to make.

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If you are in a high moisture climate coat these ornaments with varnish. I've had them disintegrate on me when I was in Florida and in the Bahamas.

Just a little tip: Be careful if you have dogs. I made these ornaments in preschool (20 years ago) and come home one night to find that my dog had ripped open the ornament box to eat these ornaments! I was shocked.

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