Cinnamon Salt Dough Christmas Ornaments
By Gwen Leron
Dec 20, 2016
If you think back to your childhood, what are some of the things you remember about the holiday season? For me, it's the food we ate, the fun we had and the traditions that took place each and every year.
Once my kids were old enough, I put a lot of pressure on myself to come up with unique traditions that were our own — things that my kids will look back on with fondness when they become adults. But I quickly realized that these things can't always be forced. The best ideas for traditions come naturally, and one that happened naturally for us was making these cinnamon salt dough ornaments.
The tradition started years ago when, one December, I took a cooking and craft class with my eldest. As part of the class, we made these cinnamon ornaments. My daughter had so much fun, we wanted to do it at home as well.
There are many different recipes for this craft on the internet; the one below is a slight adaptation of the recipe we made in our class that day.
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Here's what you'll need:
- 1 cup white flour
- 1/2 cup salt
- 6 tbsp. ground cinnamon
- 3/4 cup warm water
- a rolling pin
- parchment paper
- cookie cutters
- a drinking straw
- cookie sheets (lined with parchment paper)
First, add the flour, salt and cinnamon to a bowl and mix until all the ingredients are combined. Then slowly add water, and mix. Once combined, knead with your hands until a dough is formed then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes so it firms up. Once the time has passed, remove the dough from the fridge and pre-heat the oven to 250˚F.
Next, place a piece of parchment paper down for each child and separate the dough so each gets a piece to work with. Depending on how old they are, they can roll the dough out themselves, or you may have to help.
You want the rolled dough to end up being about a 1/4-inch thick. If you roll them too thin, the ornaments will bubble and curl as they dry in the oven. If you make them too thick, they won't dry properly. If needed, dust the rolling pin with extra flour to avoid sticking.
Using the cookie cutters, cut the dough and gently place each ornament on the parchment-lined cookie sheets. Set the extra pieces aside to roll back out and cut pieces from until there's no dough left.
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Note: The size of your cookie cutters will determine how many ornaments you get from the dough. With our latest batch, we made 25.
Now, use the drinking straw to poke a hole at the top of each ornament.
Then dust off any excess flour from the ornaments and place the cookie sheets in the pre-heated oven for two hours. Yes, two hours! The ornaments are being dried out in the oven, not being baked, so this is why it needs to be done at a low temperature for such a large amount of time.
At the one hour point, remove the cookie sheets from the oven, flip the ornaments over and place back in the oven. The first side will be really light in colour, almost white. That will be the back of the ornaments!
When done, remove from the oven and let cool. Once completely cooled, add string to each ornament. You can also decorate them if you choose.
Note: If you do choose to decorate, use thick paints (such as gel paints) or glitter glue. Water colours will not work well since the ornaments are porous.
Hang the finished ornaments on your tree or give to grandparents, relatives, teachers and/or babysitters!
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