Cornstarch playdough offers an economical alternative to store bought playdough. If you need large quantities of playdough, homemade recipes save significantly on the cost involved compared to store bought counterparts. Many cost effective, simple recipe variations exist. All have in common the use of low cost, common household items and easy construction.
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Cornstarch playdough contains in large part, common household cornstarch often used for cooking. Different recipes for the playdough contain varying other ingredients. Most often the other ingredients combined with the cornstarch include either baking soda or salt, and water. More complicated recipes exist which call for the addition of glue, alum, scent, sand or colouring. Glue, alum and sand change the texture of the dough while scent and colour add to its aesthetic appeal.
Recipe 1: 2 cups each cornstarch and baking soda, 1 ¼ cups water. Mix cornstarch and baking soda. Add water slowly while stirring in a pot over medium heat. Continue stirring over medium heat until the dough thickens to mashed potato consistency. Lay dough on plate, cover with a damp towel, and knead once completely cooled. After kneading, roll to ½" - ¾" thickness. Use cookie cutters or knife to create shapes then air dry or cook one hour in 250-degree oven.
Recipe 2: ½ cup each salt, hot water, cold water and cornstarch. Mix salt and hot water then bring them to boil in a pan. In bowl mix cornstarch and cold water until cornstarch completely combined. Stir cornstarch mixture slowly into salt water in pan. Cook over low heat until mixture forms a ball. Once cool, knead dough. Continue as above, rolling out dough, cutting shapes and drying.
Choose a variation of the playdough recipe for different effects. For a shiny, glass like dough, mix 1/3 cup each glue and cornstarch. Mix until this forms a ball. Add more cornstarch or glue as needed. Roll out very thin, make shapes and allow to dry overnight. For textured dough, mix 1 cup sand, ½ cup cornstarch and 1 tablespoon alum. Add ¾ cup hot water to sand mixture, then cook over medium heat until ball forms. Allow to cool, knead dough and create shapes.
Use cornstarch dough in place of store bought dough or clay under any circumstances. Remember that homemade cornstarch dough takes time to prepare and that doubling or tripling recipes may be necessary. Use of gel food colouring rather than liquid food colouring provides a richer colour. Paint objects only after completely dry. Spray painted objects with sealer or coat with varnish or nail polish for added shine and protection.
Create cornstarch dough and save money. Produce large quantities for a fraction of the cost of store bought dough. Produce a wide variety of textures, colours and scents to meet your activity needs easily. Making the dough with children provides an instant science lesson regarding solids, liquids, mixtures and measuring. As an extension, have children compare various types of dough. Homemade cornstarch dough provides both versatility and economy.