Thursday, January 9, 2014

Play Food Tutorial: Indian Food

DIY play food is all the rage these days and it isn’t that difficult to make, even if you’re a sewing novice.  I put my beginner-level sewing skills to use this year making play food for my son, and gifts for friends and relatives.


1.) A needle and good thread in various colors.  I like the quilter’s thread from JoAnn Fabrics because it is often on sale and it is strong enough to hold your creations together.

2.) Wool Felt.  Unlike regular felt, wool felt is made from 100% wool.  While this does mean it is more expensive than regular crafting felt, wool felt is much tougher than synthetic felt and it will maintain its shape without falling apart when you cut it.  I buy my wool felt online from Weir Dolls andCrafts.

3.) A sharp pair of scissors.  Fiskars Razor Sharp scissors have a locking mechanism to prevent kids from cutting themselves if the scissors accidentally fall into their hands.  Available at Amazon and craft stores, they make cutting a breeze but they are incredibly sharp so be careful.  A few reviewers mentioned cutting themselves by mishandling the scissors while opening the package.

4.) Cotton fabric.


I cut circles out of wool felt for my poli/chapati/roti/paratha/naan and sewed brown wool felt spots on to resemble the burnt patches.

I cut a blob shape out of brown cotton in a pair and sewed the pair together inside-out, leaving an opening.  I then turned it right-side-out, stuffed it, and sealed it.  I sewed yellow and green bits of wool felt onto one side to be muttar paneer, and using brown thread added cumin and then finished it with dots of red thread to look like red chilli powder.  My son uses this in a bowl sometimes too as it doubles as daal (lentil soup) in his pretend play.

I cut triangles out of tan cotton cloth to make samosas, sewed them together inside-out,  leaving an inch opening, and then added bits of yellow and green wool felt on the edges to look like the potato and peas stuffing was oozing out, before turning the triangles right-side-out and stuffing them with old fabric.  I then sewed the opening shut.

I cut triangles out of green cotton leftover from my chef's hats to make paan, sewed them together inside-out,  leaving an inch opening, and then turned them right-side-out and stuffed them with old fabric before closing the opening.

The whole process wasn't too time consuming and the results added some variety to our homemade play food collection.

*UPDATE: Coming this January 2015, I will have a tutorial for felt masala dosa, a felt samosa and felt idli sambar.  

I will add links below as they are posted:

And if you want to enjoy some Bollywood music as you pretend to eat your playfood, check out my dad's radio program, Geetanjali.  He has been broadcasting for 40 years.  His Michigan radio program airs on (click Listen Live) Saturdays, from 9 to 10 a.m. EST and his commercial-free program airs on demand any time, 24/7 on (Click on Geetanjali, the top program listed under the Hindi section on the right).  It's full of great music and the history behind it.

Check back every Monday and Thursday for new posts, including more play food tutorials for bowtie pasta, tacos, sandwiches, pizza and tea.
Coming up Monday: a detailed post on Elimination Communication, (EC), taking your baby to the bathroom from birth.