Today's recipe is going to be different from the ones I make daily, because it's not something to eat. It is the recipe to a recycled paper that calls for seeds, so after reading the letter, my mom will be able to sow anise, cosmo sensation, rock cress, cress water, radish, and pepper! :)
I bought all of these seeds at CEAGESP public market, although I would have more options at an agricultural store. Here is where I found out how to make it. As usual, I made some changes to my taste.
- 3 1/2 cups old paper to be recycled
- 3 1/2 cups hot water
- Liquid food coloring
- Large sieve
- Large plastic bag
- 2 large dish cloths (they will stain)
- 1 old face towel
- seeds as you like
- large baking sheet
I started tearing the paper in pieces as small as I could. There was golden tissue paper
and typing paper.
I measured it (I got 3 12/ cups), and poured over it an equal amount of hot water (picture 1).
I set it aside for 15 minutes, so that the paper would soften and the water would chill a bit,
then I transferred it all to the blender.
I processed it slowly, because my blender is not very tough. I turn it on a little, turn it off,
turn on again, etc. Until I obtain a smooth batter, without bits (picture 2).
Next thing, I transferred the batter to different cups, where I could add the coloring
and the seeds. It's nice to use small seeds, so that the paper won't become too uneven.
Well, about the coloring there are no secrets: you drop it and mix with a spoon until
you achieve the desired color. Then just pour in the seeds and mix again (picture 3).
I let it rest for 15 minutes, so that the coloring will soak in the fibers.
Meanwhile I organized the table.
I covered the table with a large piece of plastic, and I placed one of the dishcloths over it.
I left aside the other dish cloth I would use.
After the 15 minutes, I poured the content of one cup in the sieve and pressed to take
out the maximum of liquid.
After that, I placed this batter over the cloth in the table and pressed with my hands
to make it thin and uniform (picture 4), besides trying to make it fairly rectangular.
I covered with the other cloth and the face towel and pressed again, to remove the
maximum amount of water.
I repeated the operation with each cup of batter.
I pre-heated the oven at 180oC, and carefully placed each paper in the baking sheet.
I left it for 10 minutes in the oven to dry.
My trick is to place a clothing clip on the oven's door, to keep it from closing completely,
thus allowing the steam to scape.
After 10 minutes the papers weren't fully dry, but I was afraid the seeds might burn
if I left them in the heat for a longer while.
So I put a dry dish cloth on top of a cooling rack and left the papers air drying until
the following day.
And that's it! Then all you need it to trim the edges of the papers and write letters,
cards or notes.