Sunday, 27 September 2015

A dance of flour and salt with fire

After researching crafts ideas, my favourite has been salt dough, as it's so easy and cheap to do. It's gone, down  increadbly at work  as it's incorporates baking and cutting shapes out with cookie cutters. So,  I was going to make some to decorate my tree with as I want a truly DIY Halloween tree. 

I've been practising on making salt dough and this is my fifth or sixth batch,  I'm getting to feel the correct consistency of the dough, the right measurement ingredients, and cooking times. 

The recipe I've developed:

  • Cup and a half of flour
  • Cup of salt 
  • Cup of water
  • First add the flour and salt and mix, I would recommend adding half a cup of water then mix in the bowl. Depending on the consistency add about a quarter of water and mix.  I've found if you add too much water it can make the dough too sticky if the dough becomes too sticky add more flour. 
  • Once the dough is mixed, start kneading the dough and use flour to prevent the dough from sticking to the surface and add flour as required. 
  • Knead the dough until its smooth and has a slightly firm consistency. (My cheat is to put in the fridge for about 20/30 minutes).

If the dough is too sticky when you pick the items up, it can stretch and destroy the item.

  • Add flour to the rolling pin and roll the dough until 1cm thick and cut out using cookie cutters and place onto a flat cooking tray. Poke a hole through the dough where you'd like to hang place a ribbon to hang the item, I used a match stick to create a hole. 

  • Before cutting out, preheat the over to 150 centre degrades and turn down the heat to 50 centres degrades. 
  • Last night, it took me a few hours to cook and I regularly turned the salt dough cookies over. I've found slow cooking works best as I prevent air bubbles that can create a weakness.  

Here are my finished items; I'm planning to decorate them. 

I mainly used Halloween cookie cutters from Pound Land and used a couple of  Easter cookie cutters from pound land I'm going to decorate the chick as an owl and a vampire rabbit, it's a local legend in Newcastle.

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