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Simple Gingerbread House recipes by Sagittarius ,  Dec 28, 2014

Method

  1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Melt the butter, sugar and syrup in a pan. Mix the flour, bicarbonate of soda and ground ginger into a large bowl, then stir in the butter mixture to make a stiff dough. If it won't quite come together, add a tiny splash of water.
  2. Cut out the template (see below to download). Put a sheet of baking paper on your work surface and roll about one quarter of the dough to the thickness of two £1 coins. Cut out one of the sections, then slide the gingerbread, still on its baking paper, onto a baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough, re-rolling the trimmings, until you have two side walls, a front and back wall and two roof panels. Any leftover dough can be cut into Christmas trees, if you like.
  3. Pick out the most intact flaked almonds and gently poke them into the roof sections, pointy-end first, to look like roof tiles. Bake all the sections for 12 mins or until firm and just a little darker at the edges. Leave to cool for a few mins to firm up, then trim around the templates again to give clean, sharp edges. Leave to cool completely.
  4. Put the egg whites in a large bowl, sift in the icing sugar, then stir to make a thick, smooth icing. Spoon into a piping bag with a medium nozzle. Pipe generous snakes of icing along the wall edges, one by one, to join the walls together. Use a small bowl to support the walls from the inside, then allow to dry, ideally for a few hours.
  5. Once dry, remove the supports and fix the roof panels on. The angle is steep so you may need to hold these on firmly for a few mins until the icing starts to dry. Dry completely, ideally overnight. To decorate, pipe a little icing along the length of 20 mini chocolate fingers and stick these lengthways onto the side walls of the house. Use three, upright, for the door. Using the icing, stick sweets around the door and on the front of the house. To make the icicles, start with the nozzle at a 90-degree angle to the roof and squeeze out a pea-sized blob of icing. Keeping the pressure on, pull the nozzle down and then off - the icing will pull away, leaving a pointy trail. Repeat all around the front of the house. Cut the chocolate mini roll or dipped Flake on an angle, then fix with icing to make a chimney. Pipe a little icing around the top. If you've made gingerbread trees, decorate these now, too, topping each with a silver ball, if using. Dust the roof with icing sugar for a snowy effect. Lay a winding path of sweets, and fix gingerbread trees around and about using blobs of icing. Your gingerbread house will be edible for about a week but will last a lot longer.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup light molasses or dark corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons water

For assemblage and decoration:

Directions:

Gingerbread House:

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, molasses, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and baking soda together until the mixture is smooth. Blend in the flour and water to make a stiff dough. Chill at least 30 minutes or until firm.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut paper patterns for the gingerbread house:

Two rectangles (figs. A and B), 3 by 5 inches, to make the front and back of the house. Two rectangles (figs. C and D), 3 by 5 1/2 inches for the roof. Two pieces for the ends of the house (figs. E and F), 3 inches wide at the base, 3 inches to the roof line, and slanted to a peak 5 1/2 inches from the bottom. Four smaller rectangles (figs. G, H, I, and J), 1 1/2 by 1 inch for the roof and sides of the entryway. And one piece (fig. K), 2 inches wide at the base, 1 1/2 inches to the roof line, and slanted to a peak 2 1/2 inches from the bottom for the front of the entryway.

Roll gingerbread dough out to edges on a large, rimless cookie sheet. Place paper patterns onto the rolled out dough. With a sharp, straight edged knife, cut around each of the pieces, but leave pieces in place.

Bake at 375 degrees F for about 15 minutes until dough feels firm.

Place patterns on top of the gingerbread again and trim shapes, cutting edges with a straight-edged sharp knife. Leave to cool on baking sheet.

Place royal icing into pastry bag with a writing tip and press out to decorate individual parts of house, piping on decorations, windows, door, etc., as desired. Let dry until hardened.

Glue sides, front and back of house together at corners using royal icing. Place an object against the pieces to prop up until icing is dry (it only takes a few minutes).

Glue the two roof pieces to the pitched roofline of the house. Then, similarly, glue the sides and roof of the entryway together with icing. Attach the entryway to the front of the house.

Continue decorating the house, glueing on gumdrops, licorice and peppermint, as desired.

Royal Icing:

  • 1 pound (3-3/4 cups) powdered sugar, sifted if lumpy
  • 1 to 2 large egg whites, or substitute 4 teaspoons packaged egg whites and 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract, vanilla or lemon juice

Mix all of the ingredients together using an electric hand mixer, until the icing is smooth and thin enough to be pressed through a pastry bag with a writing tip. Add more lemon juice, if necessary.

  • Ingredients

Equipment

  • You will need: Base - Plywood, heavy platter or chopping board; Cardboard cut-outs - Two 13cm x 19cm rectangles (roof), Two 11.5cm x 16cm rectangles (side walls), Two 16cm x 19cm rectangles (front and back), each trimmed at 1 short end to form two 10cm-high gables; Decorations - Raffaello balls, white choc melts, white choc bits, Allens ABC jubes, red M&Ms or Smarties, red and white licorice bullets, red jelly beans, strawberry creams.

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 185g butter, chopped
  • 1/2 cup golden syrup
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup pure icing sugar

Royal icing

  • 2 eggwhites, lightly beaten
  • 3 cups pure icing suga
  • Method
  • Notes
  1. Step 1

    Combine flours, ginger, cinnamon, sugar and butter in a food processor. Process until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Whisk golden syrup and eggs together in a jug. With the motor running, add egg mixture and process until dough just comes together. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently until smooth. Cut dough in half and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or until well chilled.

  2. Step 2

    Roll dough, 1 portion at a time, between 2 sheets baking paper until 5mm thick. Remove top layer baking paper. Using cardboard cut-outs as a guide, cut shapes from dough (see tip). Place gingerbread in a single layer on trays. Freeze for 15 minutes or until firm.

  3. Step 3

    Preheat oven to 180°C. Line 4 baking trays with baking paper. Place gingerbread on trays. Bake, 2 trays at a time, for 15 minutes or until firm. Cool on trays.

  4. Step 4

    Make royal icing: Using an electric mixer, beat eggwhites until soft peaks form. Gradually add icing sugar, beating constantly until thick.

  5. Step 5

    Use icing to join walls together, placing unopened cans of food to support walls until icing dries. Use icing to attach roof to walls, using cans to support roof (to prevent it fom slipping off walls) until icing dries completely.

  6. Step 6

    Spoon 1/2 cup remaining icing into a snap-lock bag. Trim 1 corner of bag and pipe windows and doors on house and frost on roof edges. Allow to dry. Spoon remaining icing into snap-lock bag. Pipe a little icing on the back of each lolly and attach to house to decorate. Dust roof with icing sugar.

Baking the Gingerbread

- 1 1/4 cups packed dark-brown sugar - 3/4 cup unsulfured molasses - 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter - 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon - 1 tablespoon ground ginger - 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt - 1 1/4 cups milk - 1 tablespoon baking powder - 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Combine brown sugar, molasses, butter, spices, and salt in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until sugar is dissolved, about 10 minutes. Stir in the milk and remove the mixture from the heat.

Pour the mixture into a large mixing bowl and add the baking powder and flour. With an electric mixer, and beginning on low speed and increasing to medium, beat until well combined. Divide dough in even fourths and shape into disks. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate overnight. Dough can be frozen up to 1 month and thaw in the refrigerator before using.
When you are ready to bake the gingerbread, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and roll out each dough disk on a lightly floured surface.  The dough will be somewhat tough so you will really have to put some elbow grease into making it thin.  Keep rolling in a back and forth motion, turning the disk of dough and flouring the pin and surface in between.  Roll until the dough is about 1/8 of an inch thick.  If the dough becomes warm from handling place it back into the refrigerator before cutting the stencils to cool the dough.
Using the pre-traced stencils, which you can download here, lay the stencil on top of the rolled out dough and cut the dough with a paring knife.  Place the dough on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until browned, rotating the sheet halfway.  Let it cool completely.

oyal Icing

- 2 cup of powdered sugar, sifted - 1 large egg white

Beat the egg whites in a bowl until foamy.  Add in the sugar and continue to beat until white and glossy.

To decorate your gingerbread, scoop the icing into a pastry bag with a small tip or a large ziplock bag.  If using a ziplock bag, push all the icing to one corner and snip the corner at a diagonal creating a very small hole.

Start decorating by creating fish-scale U’s on the two roofs.  Trace the edges of the windows and doors with icing and add whatever additional details you’d like.  We’ve added dots in addition to the lines, but this is the fun part of gingerbread houses, so use your imagination!

The icing should dry very hard and wait until it has completely dried before assembling the house.

Caramel

The caramel acts as the glue that holds your house together.  When you are ready to assemble the house, start making the caramel.  Because this cools quickly and hardens you can’t make this ahead of time.

- 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar - a small squeeze of lemon juice

Put the sugar in a saucepan and cook over high heat, stir the mixture until it starts caramelize and turn a deep amber about 10 minutes.  Remove off the heat and begin to use immediately.

Assembling the Gingerbread House

Dip each adjoining side of the walls of the house in caramel and hold together for a few seconds.  The caramel will harden holding the pieces together.  Once all 4 walls are held together. you can attach the roof by using a spoon or small brush to trace the V-shape and attach the roof pieces.

Assemble the chimney together and brush the bottom with caramel and attach to one side of the roof.

Finishing Touches

Now that your house is assembled you can put on the finishing touches that truly transforms this gingerbread house into a winter wonderland.  On a nice serving tray that you will be using to display the house, sift a thin layer of powdered sugar to cover so it looks like a pristine layer of fresh snow.  Place the house on top of this layer.  Add a few pine cones for trees and a couple of cinnamon sticks for wood logs.  Dust another fine layer of powdered sugar over everything.

To make the icicles, carefully and lightly squeeze a small drip of icing holding the tip close to the roof.  As you get it to your desired length, brush the tip onto the edge of the roof and the icing will stick to and hang from the roof.

Use a q-tip or your pinky finger to make little footprint imprints in the “snow.”  Add whatever other touches you’d like and you have a beautiful and charming masterpiece!

Ingredients

  • GINGERBREAD HOUSE DOUGH:
  • 2 cups Imperial Sugar® / Dixie Crystals® Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups shortening
  • 2 cups dark molasses
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 9 to 10 cups all-purpose flour
  • ICING AND ASSEMBLY:
  • 8 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 6 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 3/4 to 1 cup warm water
  • Decorating bag
  • Large dot (#12) decorating tip
  • Spice jars
  • Candies and cookies for decorating

Directions

  • Dough: In a large saucepan, cook the sugar, shortening and molasses on low, until shortening is melted and sugar is dissolved, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; add the cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Stir in flour, 1 cup at a time, until dough can be formed into a ball.
  • Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface; knead until even in color and smooth (not crumbly or dry), adding more flour if needed. Form into a log. Cut into five equal pieces; wrap in plastic wrap. Cut patterns out of paper or cardboard.
  • Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly grease the foil. Lay a damp towel on counter; place prepared pan on towel (to prevent slipping). Unwrap one portion of dough. Using a very lightly floured rolling pin, roll out dough directly on baking sheet to a 15-in. x 10-1/2-in. rectangle about 1/4 in. thick. Position patterns at least 1/2 in. apart on dough as shown. Cut around patterns with a sharp knife or pizza cutter; remove patterns. Remove dough scraps; cover and save to re-roll if needed.
  • Bake at 375° for 10-14 minutes or until cookie springs back when lightly touched. Remove from oven; immediately replace patterns on dough. Cut around the edges to trim off excess cookie. Cool 3-4 minutes or until cookies begin to firm up. Carefully remove to a wire rack; cool Repeat with remaining dough and patterns.
  • Icing and Assembly: In a large bowl, beat the sugar, meringue powder and 3/4 cup water on low until blended. Beat on high for 8-10 minutes or until stiff peaks form, adding additional water, 1 tablespoon at a time, if needed. Place a damp paper towel over bowl and cover tightly until ready to use.
  • To assemble frame of the house, test your cookie pieces to make sure they fit together snugly. if necessary, file carefully with a serrated knife or an emery board to make fit. Fill decorating bag two-thirds full with icing. Beginning with the front of the house, squeeze a 3/8-in. wide strip of icing onto the bottom edge of the front piece. Position on the cookie base, 3 in. from the front edge of the base. Prop it upright with spice jars for 2-3 minutes or until icing hardens; remove jars.
  • To add the sides, squeeze icing on lower edge of one side piece and side edge of the front piece. Align pieces at a right angle, making sure they are as tight as possible. Repeat with the other side.
  • To add the back,squeeze icing on the bottom and side edges of the back piece; position with the other assembled pieces. For added stability, squeeze icing along the inside edge of all pieces and corners.
  • To assemble the roof, working with one side at a time, squeeze icing on the upper edge of the slant of the front and back pieces on one side. Also squeeze icing on the adjoining side piece. Carefully place roof piece on the slants so that the roof's peak is even with the pints of the front and back. (There will be an overhang of 1/2 in.) Repeat with other side of the roof.
  • To decorate, add a chimney if desired (see photo for assembly). Decorate the house with remaining icing, candies and cookies of your choice. Yield: 1 gingerbread house.

Here's a great cookie to pair with your next peppermint mocha! This is from Cookie Craft Christmas, which we reviewed earlier today. We really like this easy recipe for gingerbread houses; it's a lot more accessible (and eat-able) than all those more constructed and fancy gingerbread houses.

Peppermint Gingerbread HouseFrom Cookie Craft Christmas by Valerie Peterson and Janice Fryer, published by Storey Publishing

Gingerbread has been a European holiday staple for centuries. Gingerbread houses became popular there and in America after the Brothers Grimm published their story “Hansel and Gretel.”

Cookies and Icinggingerbread cookie doughpiping icing: white (Use this Royale Icing

Equipment and Embellishmentshouse cutter (or use this template or this template from Martha Stewart. Or use ours!)small rectangle cutter or paring knifeyellow hard candies, crushedpeppermint candies, crushed and wholeoblong silver dragées

Techniquesmaking windowpanes (page 13/see below)piping (page 22/see below)attaching candy add-ons (page 25/see below)

1. Prepare, roll, and chill cookie dough according to recipe and rolling instructions.

2. Cut out house shapes. Cut out windows with a cookie cutter. Fill the windows with crushed yellow candies. Bake and cool according to windowpane instructions.

3. Pipe the roofline and chimney, filling in the chimney completely. While wet, sprinkle with crushed peppermint candy; allow to set. Gently shake off excess candy.

4. With piping icing, affix whole peppermint candies and pipe dot detail around candies. Pipe detail around windowpanes and on the gable peak. Affix dragées.

Making windowpanes:Add crushed candies to your cutouts and you’ll have windowpanes, which give your Christmas cookies a beautiful, see-through stained-glass effect. To crush hard candies, place them in a double-layer ziplock bag and smash them with a hammer until they’re powdery or in tiny shards. Completely fill the holes in the cookie dough with candy. Bake the cookies according to recipe instructions; the candy will melt to create windowpanes. Cool the cookies completely on the cookie sheet before removing to allow the melted candy to harden.

Piping:Piping is the technique you will use most often, either to outline cookies to be flooded or to add embellishments. When piping, hold your pastry bag at a 45-degree angle above the surface of the cookie; you do not want to drag the tip. Use the heel of your palm to apply pressure to squeeze out the icing and the other hand to steady and guide the tip. If you’re making dots, hold the bag straight up and down. Varying the pressure on the pastry bag will vary the thickness of the piping.

Attaching candy add-ons:Small candies or dragées stick readily to wet flood. Use tweezers if you want precise control over the placement. To attach add-ons to dry flood, use a dab of piping icing to affix.

Ingredients

  • 11 ounces/300 g butter
  • 8 ounces/ 225 g golden syrup or treacle
  • 4 1/2 ounces/125 g caster sugar (superfine)
  • 4 1/2 ounces/125 g soft dark brown sugar
FOR THE ICING FOR THE GINGERBREAD BOYS AND GIRLS:
  • 6 ounces/175 g icing sugar (confectioners')
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons boiling water
FOR DECORATING THE GINGERBREAD BOYS AND GIRLS:
  • Candy coated chocolate (recommended: Smarties and M and M)
  • Chocolate buttons (milk or white chocolate)
  • Gold and silver balls or anything else that takes your fancy
FOR THE 'GLUE' AND ICING FOR THE HOUSE:
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 pound, 2 ounces/500 g icing sugar (confectioners'), plus extra for dusting
FOR DECORATING THE HOUSE:
  • Hundreds and thousands chocolate buttons (milk and sugared chocolate)
  • Jelly Tots
  • Dolly Mixtures
  • Sugar strands, for sprinkling
  • Flake bar, for the chimney
  • Any other sweets you wish
  • Special equipment: Piping bag, nozzles, and tips
Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F/180 degrees C/Gas mark 4. Line 2 baking trays with parchment paper.

In a large saucepan, melt the butter together with the golden syrup or treacle, caster sugar, and brown sugar.

Sift the flour, ground ginger, bicarbonate of soda, and cinnamon into a large bowl. Add the melted butter-sugar mixture and mix together. Knead the mixture for a few seconds until it comes together, adding a teaspoon or so of water if necessary, but without allowing it to get too wet. Flatten the dough slightly into a round, about 3/4-inch/2cm thick, wrap with cling film/plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

To make the gingerbread boys and girls: Remove the dough from the refrigerator, dust the work surface with flour and roll all of the dough out to about 1/4-inch/5 mm thick. Cut out the girl and boy shapes using boy/girl cutters, transfer onto the baking trays and cook in the oven for 12 minutes, until they are slightly firm, a little darker at the edges and slightly drier on top. Allow the shapes to firm up for a few minutes, then place them on a wire rack to cool. When they have cooled, they can be iced, if you wish.

To make the icing: Sift the icing sugar (confectioners') into a bowl and add the water. Beat until the icing comes together, adding a little more water, if necessary. Cook's Note: Be careful not to add too much water or the icing will be too runny.

Using a small palette knife or the back of a spoon dipped into boiling water (to make the icing easier to spread), spread the icing over the cooled gingerbread boys and girls. If you wish to pipe on the details, such as faces and hair, spoon the icing into a small piping bag with just the smallest corner cut off. While the icing is still slightly 'unset' on the biscuits, arrange the silver balls or whatever decorations you are using, then set aside for the icing to set.

To make the gingerbread house: First make templates in paper to the measurements/dimensions given below. These are handy not just for now, but for when the dough is cooked and you need to trim the walls and roof, to ensure all the edges are straight.

Place a sheet of parchment paper on the work surface, dust with flour and roll out about 1/4 of the dough to 1/4-inch/5 mm thick. Place one of the paper templates on the dough and cut round with a sharp knife, then slide the dough, still on its parchment paper, onto a baking tray. Repeat with the remaining dough, re-rolling the trimmings, until you have a front and back wall, 2 side walls and 2 roof panels. Re-roll any leftover dough to make into Christmas trees or boys and girls - there should be enough for 6 to 8. Carefully trim the excess paper from around each piece on the baking trays.

Bake all the sections in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until slightly firmed and just a little darker at the edges. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for a few minutes on the baking trays to firm up. One by one, lift the pieces, still on the paper, and trim around the template to give clean, sharp edges. To make an open door for the house, cut one out of the front wall and cut out windows, if you wish. Place on a wire rack for a few minutes, then turn over and peel off the trimmed paper. Leave all the pieces to cool completely.

Meanwhile, prepare a board for the house to sit on. I like to use a large wooden chopping board, which can be covered with tin foil, if you choose.

To make the icing 'glue' for the house: Place the egg whites in a large bowl, sift in the icing sugar, then stir to make a thick, smooth icing. Spoon into a piping bag with a small, star-shaped nozzle.

To assemble the house: Pipe generous lengths of icing along the vertical wall edges, one by one, to join the walls together. Using a bowl or some other object or objects to support the walls from the inside, hold the walls gently in place with your hands until the icing is dry. Leave the roofless house to dry for at least 30 minutes until the icing is firmly set.

Once dry, remove the supports and pipe a thick line of icing along 1 long side of a roof piece and along the top edge of all the walls. Stick the 2 roof sections together at an angle and set the 2 pieces on top of the house. You can arrange the roof so that there is a slight overhang on either side of the house. Hold the roof gently in place for a few minutes until it dries, then leave it to dry for a further 30 minutes.

While the roof is drying, attach the door to the doorway - so that it looks slightly ajar - by running a line of icing glue down 1 side and along the base. Stick a small piece of a Flake bar onto the roof as a chimney.

Using the icing as glue, pipe around the windows, and stick sweets around the door and on the front of the house. To make snow on the roof and icicles hanging from it, start with the nozzle at a 90-degree angle to the roof and squeeze out a pea-size blob of icing. Keeping the pressure on, pull the nozzle down and then pull away, leaving a pointy trail of icing. Repeat all around the edge of the roof.

Using the icing as glue, stick milk chocolate and sugared buttons onto the roof for the tiles. Glue the gingerbread trees or boys and girls around the house, then scatter the board with sugar strands.

Cook's Note: Rachel's Baking TipThe gingerbread house will stay fresh for a week, although, after all the work putting it together and icing it, the temptation is to keep it for the few weeks over Christmas, by which time it will be quite stale and not so good to eat!

Dimensions:Front and back: 2 (5 by 7-inches/12.7 by 17.7 cm)Roof: 2 (3 by 7-inches/7.6 by 17.7 cm)Sides: 2 (5 by 6-inches/12.7 by 15.2 cm)

Ingredients

  • 3-½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup dark molasses
  • ¼ cup water

Method

  1. Sift dry ingredients together.
  2. Cream butter, sugar and dark molasses.
  3. Add dry ingredients and water alternately into creamed mixture to form a stiff dough.
  4. Roll out dough to ~ ¼ inch thickness and cut shapes.  You can roll directly onto cookie sheet.
  5. Gather scraps and repeat.
  6. Bake at 350°F for ~8-12 minutes – depends on size of cookies or gingerbread house sections.
  7. Let cool.

Note:  don’t try to make a double batch – it is a very stiff dough, hard to work in larger volume.

Icing Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 egg white
  • approximately 1-½ cups confectioners sugar.

Method

  1. Beat egg white in mixer until frothy;  add sugar gradually, continuing to beat until glossy white and creamy.

Note: Use icing immediately – it hardens with exposure to air. Other kinds of icing can be used for cookies – this icing works to hold a house together as it hardens over time.

Time to make: 35 minutes Construct & decorate: 45 minutes Start-to-finish (including cooling) 4hrs Yield: 1 house, plus some extra doughIngredients: 1 Cup Shortening 1 Teaspoon Baking soda 1 Cup Brown sugar 1 Teaspoon Salt 1 1/2 Cup Molasses 4 Teaspoon Ground Ginger 2 Eggs 4 Teaspoon Cinnamon 6 Cups Flour 1 Teaspoon Ground Cloves Directions: Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350F. Either by hand or with an electric mixer, cream together shortening, brown sugar and molasses. Add the eggs one at a time and mix well. Add dry ingredients and mix until combined (if mixing by hand it may be necessary to knead the dough a bit at the end). Divide dough in half. Roll out each on the parchment paper to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut out templates and place on top of the gingerbread. Cut around template outline. Remove and save the extra dough for another use (make some gingerbread men!) Bake 15-20 minutes rotating twice during cooking. Re-cut outlines after removing from oven. Let cool completely (at least 2 hours) before assembling. Royal IcingRecipeIngredients: 3 Egg whites 1/2 teaspoon Cream of Tartar 3 1/2 cups Confectioner's Sugar Mix together egg whites and cream of tartar. Add confectioner's sugar and mix until combined. Store icing in a zip lock bag. Directions: Assemble the house per photos. Decorate with your choice of candies. Leave overnight to set.
Ingredients:

House

White icing for piping

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cupicing sugar, sifted (plus more until the icing holds its shape)

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 180°C (170°C fan bake), with the rack just below the middle. Line a baking tray with baking paper or a Teflon liner.
  2. Cut three shapes from cardboard. (Each piece of card will be used twice to cut the 6 gingerbread shapes for one house. Cut an 8 x 10 cm rectangle (for the roof) and a 6 x 8 cm rectangle (for the side walls). To make the peaked end-wall shape, draw a 10 x 6 cm rectangle, then make a mark 4 cm from one end on the two long sides, and another mark in the middle of the short side nearest the other two marks. Join this mark to the other two, then cut out.
  3. Warm the first four ingredients together (butter, brown sugar, golden syrup, treacle and extra treacle), mixing until smooth. Take off the heat and stir in the egg yolks.
  4. Then the sieved dry ingredients (plain flour, ground ginger, & baking soda). Knead to form a smooth dough, adding a little water or extra flour if necessary. Cut the dough into four even pieces and wrap until using.
  5. To make one house, roll one piece out about 3 mm thick on the floured board. It should be just large enough to cut two each of the three cardboard shapes from it. Re-roll dough scraps if necessary.) Place the shapes on a prepared baking tray.
  6. Bake for about seven minutes or until evenly browned. (Do not under cook.) While pieces are warm, carefully lift them onto a cooling rack. Repeat for other houses.
  7. To construct and decorate houses, make 'White Icing' for Piping. Whisk two egg whites until foamy. Beat in about one cup of sifted icing sugar at a time, until the icing holds its shape when piped from an icing bag (or a tough plastic bag with a small hole in one corner). This icing sets hard and can be quite brittle if not stuck firmly to (or supported by) the biscuit base.
  8. Pipe the icing on the walls and roof making shingles, doors, windows, etc. Leave plain or decorate with sweets if desired. Using more of the icing, "glue" the walls together on a cardboard base. When the walls are firm position the roof on top using more icing, and leave to set.
  9. Enjoy.
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