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Countertop Woes: Rolling Dough

Many people experience frustration when rolling out dough on countertops. I myself have been both alarmed and worried by the sticky mess left behind on my counters. Here are a few good tricks for getting a nice, flat dough without ruining your surfaces or causing a giant mess.If you want to work right on the countertop, here are a couple of things you can do to minimize mess. For dough, like for pizza or pie, you’ll want to sprinkle flour across the surface before putting the dough down. Or, if you want to make something like cinnamon rolls, I’ve found that using powdered sugar works great. Get a rolling pin and put flour on it, too. It makes a bit of a mess when cleaning up, as water and flour create a kind of glue-like substance. However, I learned that the flour is much easier to deal with than the sticky dough alone. This does not, however, work well on wood countertops: particles get stuck in the wood and are really difficult to get out. Flat surfaces like granite, steel, and other counters won’t get damaged.

Another way you can roll out your dough is by putting it between two sheets of wax paper or brown parchment paper. Again, use flour or powdered sugar to minimize sticking. Lay one sheet down and sprinkle on top. Set down the dough, and add more of the flour or sugar. Then lay the final sheet on top, and roll away. This is easier to clean up because most of the flour, sugar, and dough particles will be stuck on the paper. You’ll still need a wet rag to clean up the residue, but it’s nothing like the flour-water paste!

You can also circumvent most of the countertop mess by purchasing a marble cutting board or a silicone dough mat. The marble makes a good hard, steady surface and is easy to clean up after using. Silicone dough mats are good for the same reason, and they also often come with measurements to help you determine how big your dough circle will need to be. Both can be washed in the sink with hot water and soap. You won’t need to worry about damaging counters or making a large mess.