We love baking and playing with the dough. Different dough has different texture and resilience and while exploring it the child doesn’t only participates in a real life activity but is also engaged into a sensorial activity that promotes fine-motor skills. My daughter can kneed the real dough for a very long time, adding more flour or oil to it. When she was younger, I would put her in the high chair, hand her the piece of dough, some flour in the cup and a rolling pin and she would initiate herself into the whole creative process of exploring the dough.
In Russia we enjoy having all sorts of bread for tea. Buns, rolls, dinner rolls, croissants – you name it. Practically every household has a tradition of making yeast (sour) dough and then use it for making tea snacks. My grandma passed onto us a very simple recipe for the yeast dough. I still use other recipes, but this one is easiest of all.
2 tablespoons of dry yeast
3 cups of warm boiled water
4 tablespoons of sugar
6 tablespoons of flour + 5-7 cups of flour
1 cup of oil
1/2 tablespoon of salt
Mix yeast with all the water, add sugar and 6 tablespoons of flour. Whisking the whole mixture is better to avoid having lumps. Cover and leave for 15 minutes. Then, add 1 cup of oil, salt and 5-7 cups of flour (depending on what flour you are using). Put it in a warm place and let it double. Make rolls, buns or whatever else you like. This dough is great for pizza and quiche.
This time we made dinner rolls on a regular baking sheet and using the muffin pans. The other time we just made them into naans and pricked them with forks.
It is truly amazing how something as simple as yeast dough can give us a room for creativity!