I’ve come up with some terribly unsuccessful menorah making projects as a teacher. There were the self-hardening clay menorahs that crumbled almost instantly, and the Model Magic menorahs that caught on fire, to name but a few. This year I tried out salt dough. They were easy to make and they look very festive. Admittedly, the verdict is still out on whether, or how, they will self-destruct. (Who by fire, who by water…?)
I mixed a standard salt dough – one part salt to two parts flour plus enough water to hold it all together. The kindergarteners (including my daughter, Zoe) rolled them into a log, added a ball to raise the shamash, and put nine candles in to make the holes. I put them in a 200 degree oven for about two hours, but when they didn’t seem dry enough, I left them in a 100 degree oven overnight.
The next day the children painted them with acrylic paint
and for a little seasonal bling added sequins with a hot glue gun. (Ok, actually I did that part, but they picked the sequins and showed me where they wanted them to go.)
We lit ours tonight and it neither crumbled nor caught on fire.
However, the dough has become very damp and sticky on the bottom. (Who by water?) I don’t know why, and don’t know what problems that might cause down the road. So I’m not recommending salt dough menorahs. Yet. But stay tuned.
PS, doesn’t our kitchen look nice, blue CHANUKAH lights and all?