MAKE PASTA NOODLES
“Fingers are covered with gluey, pasty dough before it magically comes together,” says Dana Bowen, who, along with business partner Sara Kate Gillingham, founded The Dynamite Shop, an online cooking school for kids. “We teach kids that mistakes happen but that it’s all part of the process.” MESS KIT 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting work surface 4 large eggs
1. Have kids mound the flour on a clean surface into what resembles a volcano—complete with crater in the center. Crack 1 egg into crater and, using a fork, gently whisk the egg, pulling in bits of flour. Repeat with remaining eggs, 1 at a time. Once it becomes difficult to mix with a fork, let kids use hands to knead the dough, pushing and pressing it until it’s no longer sticky.
2. Wrap dough in plastic wrap, and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, unwrap the dough and cut it into quarters with a knife. (An adult should handle these steps.) Work with 1 piece at a time and rewrap the rest.
4. Have one kid use a rolling pin to roll out dough on a floured surface to roughly form a rectangle, almost thin enough to see through. Help them roll the rectangle into a log starting from a short end. You may also need to put them on flour duty, sprinkling a little to prevent the dough from sticking.
5. Slice the short end of log into fettuccine-like noodles (another job for an adult). Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. Add noodles to pot and boil until they float, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain and enjoy with pasta sauce. Recipe adapted from The Dynamite Shop; for full recipe instructions, go to parents.com/handmadepasta.
CLEANUP TIME! If you’re doing this project in the kitchen, a rubber dough scraper, about $3, will remove gooey flour from countertops easily, Gillingham says. “We’re also big proponents of the side towel—just a dish towel tucked into apron strings,” which encourages kids to wipe hands and spills as they go.