Naturally dyed play dough

I went out this morning, to get the last of the ingredients for the ‘cooked’ play dough recipe. So whilst Lily is napping, I’ve been busy making the dough. I am following the instructions from Mini-Eco’s post, which gives directions for using all sorts of different natural dye materials.

I couldn’t bring myself to use Lily’s blueberries (perhaps I will try this in Summer, when they are more abundant!). So I plumped for beetroot. The blog doesn’t specify if the beetroot should be uncooked or not, and I only had a packet of cooked beetroot. I used roughly 150g chopped beetroot along with one cup of fluid (the small amount of juice from the packet of beetroot made up to 1 cup with water).

I forgot to set the timer, so I may have simmered the beetroot for a minute or two longer than two minutes. It must have been about the right amount of time though as when I sieved the beetroot, the dyed water was just over 1/2 a cup.

I returned the 1/2 cup of dyed water to the pan and added in the remainder of ingredients, which I had measured out whilst the beetroot was simmering. As you can see from the picture above, the dough was almost ready when I had mixed all the ingredients together, probably as I didn’t bother letting the dyed water cool. It only took a minute or so longer on a low heat for the dough to form a ball and come away from the sides.

This is what the dough looked like when it was ready and straight from the pan.

A few seconds of kneading and the ball of dough was nice and smooth. It seems a really nice amount of play dough, not too much for one toddler but probably enough for two to share.

It also fits nicely in the Kilner Jar I picked up in Devon over the weekend! It looks like it would make a lovely gift as well packaged like this! However, this batch is going to be kept for a few days before Lily can use it, as we have ordered a set of wooden play dough tools, and I want to wait until those arrive before letting her loose! It will be a good test of how well the dough keeps in the jar as well!

I would really like to try making scented play dough. Mini-Eco have a tutorial for this. I’ve also seen a couple of companies that produce it. Mama K’s Aromatic Play Clay (a SouleMama Sponsor), I love their little bags! The Little Green Paint Box also produce some aromatic play dough. There is a blog about candy cane playdough over at The Artful Parent, which uses the recipe in First Art, which appears to be very similar to the one on Mini-Eco, although in larger quantities.

All in all, a lot of inspiration!!

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