I mentioned it to the teacher and was told they use it to color homemade play dough and for other art projects. When I suggested that another brand of food coloring that doesn't contain traces of our allergen be used, I didn't receive the response I was hoping for. Instead, it was suggested that I bring Mason his own play dough, safe for him to use, if I don't want him using the community play dough. I have found sometimes you have to pick your battles wisely, so off I went in search of homemade play dough recipes.
I found that Heidi at OneCreativeMommy.com had already done the difficult task of testing multiple recipes and judging her favorites. The recipes she used are also gluten-free, which isn't a necessity for Mason, but I like a good challenge and figured it wouldn't hurt.
The recipe I decided to try was the Easiest Gluten Free Playdough Recipe from Celiac Family. (<---Check out the original recipe there or see below!)
Easy Gluten Free Play Dough
1 cup white rice flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup salt
1 Tbsp cream of tartar
1 1/2 tsp vegetable oil (I used olive oil and it worked fine)
1 cup water (hot but not boiling)
Food coloring, as desired
Mix all dry ingredients in a medium pot. Add oil, then water and mix until thoroughly combined.
Heat on low for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. When the dough starts to pull away from the sides, turn out onto parchment paper or a Silpat liner.
Allow to cool enough to handle. Knead the food coloring in until it reaches the desired color.
*Note: my dough was pretty sticky once I began kneading, so I alternated adding more flour and cornstarch until it became the consistency I wanted.
Mason chose lime green for the color of this batch. It makes enough that you could probably split it up and do multiple colors.