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Gingerbread house

Gingerbread house

Making a gingerbread house is one of the things I enjoy the most at Christmas. The decorating part is so much fun, and it’s an activity that kids (and adults too) love. For me, for some years now, it has become a nice tradition to decorate the house with my family and then leave it for a couple of days, and eat it or not, as you prefer.

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how to make a gingerbread house

Many times, I buy directly the gingerbread house sets that they sell with the gingerbread or gingerbread cookie pieces already made simply to assemble and decorate later. This is the easiest way. When you want to make a gingerbread house simply for decorating, this is fine.

But when you feel like making a house, but you want to eat it later, especially because children generally love the idea of eating it, the best option is to make it from scratch at home, because the truth is that it tastes much better.

I really enjoy making a gingerbread house and making the whole house smell like ginger and the spices in it. It makes everything smell like Christmas.

The dough part is simple and relatively easy to make. Now, to properly cut out the pieces for the little house we usually use a mold that we print out and use to cut out each piece, using a pizza cutter or small knife. The dough has to be cut before baking. Once it is cooked, it is much more complicated to cut the pieces, so it is always done before!

To assemble the house, what we use is an icing, more specifically a royal icing, which works as glue or cement for the house. Once the house is assembled, we can decorate it with more icing, or use any kind of icing. In addition, you can put jelly beans or candies of any kind, to make the house in the style you like. This is the time to be creative.

Gingerbread house recipe

When it comes to decorating there are two options, some people prefer to decorate the pieces before assembling the house and others prefer to do it after assembling it. The first is better when you are very clear about the decoration you want, and the second when what you want is to have fun and put a lot of originality!

There are many original ideas on how to decorate a gingerbread house that are spectacular. Here are some beautiful ideas!

If you like this recipe, you have to check out our gingerbread cookies, you will love them! To make this recipe you will need a template, to cut the pices of the house. Here you have ours in PDF.

Gingerbread house

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Prep Time 6 hrs
Cook Time 20 mins
Refrigeration Time: 2 hrs
Total Time 8 hrs 20 mins
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 1 Gingrebread house

Ingredients
  

For the dough:

  • 6 1/2 C (29.80 oz) (845 gr) all purpouse flour
  • 1 tsp (0.17 oz) (5 gr) salt
  • 1/2 tsp (0.08 oz) (2.5 gr) baking soda
  • 4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 C (7.94 oz) (225 gr) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 C (10.60 oz) (300 gr) brown sugar
  • 2 tsp (0.34 fl oz) (10 ml) vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, big
  • 1 C (8.46 oz) (240 gr) molasses or maple syrup

For the royal icing:

  • 1 lbs (450 gr) confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 2 egg whites, at room temperature, using big eggs
  • 1 tbsp lemon or lime juice

To decorate:

  • Candy of your choise
  • Food coloring (it can be either liquid or gel)
  • Pipping bags and pipping tips of your choice, for decorating

Instructions
 

For the dough:

  • In a large bowl, sift the flour with the salt, baking soda, ginger powder, cinnamon, nutmeg powder and clove powder
  • In another large bowl, beat with an electric mixer or hand whisk the butter with the sugar for 2-3 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  • Add the vanilla extract and then the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition so that they are well integrated. Beat for 1 more minute until smooth and homogeneous.
  • Add the molasses or maple syrup and beat until completely blended. Add the flour mixture in three additions, beating after each addition with a rubber spatula until a very smooth batter forms.
  • Divide the dough into two equal parts and wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours or preferably overnight.
  • After this time, take the dough out of the refrigerator and use a rolling pin to roll out the dough until it is 6 to 8 mm (0.25 to 0.31 inches) thick, using parchment paper underneath, because the dough is very sticky.
  • Once the dough is rolled out, use our templates (*see the recipe notes, here below) to cut each piece with a small sharp knife (on each mold it says how many pieces to cut from each one). Bake each part of the house at 338º F (170ºC) for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Bake all the pieces a little at a time, and let them cool for 15 minutes before trying to remove them from the parchment paper.

For the royal icing:

  • In a large bowl, beat the two egg whites with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds, and while continuing to beat, add the sugar a little at a time (this can also be done with a hand whisk).
  • When everything is well incorporated, increase the speed to medium high or high, and continue beating for 3 to 5 minutes, until the royal icing has the texture you want. Once this time has passed and the mixture is much firmer, add the lemon juice and beat a little until it is integrated.

To assemble the house:

  • If you want to use different colors of royal icing, mix with food colouring in bowls using a spoon, adding the color little by little until you get the desired one. Once you have the colors, place each one in a different piping bag, using the tips of your choice.
  • There are two options here. You can decorate the pieces separately before assembling the house. In this case you have to decorate each piece with the sweets and royal icing you want, and wait for the pieces to dry for at least 2 hours. Then use a large pipping tip and white royal icing as cement to join each piece together. We recommend joining one side to the other first, and then gluing each side until you have the base ready, and wait 2 hours for everything to dry before gluing the roof pieces.
  • Option 2 is to assemble the house first, following the same procedure, first glue the four walls, and wait until everything is dry to assemble the roof. In this case, decorate the house once everything is assembled, using coloured royal icing and candy.
  • The house will be ready to eat for only 2 to 3 days, because it can be left outdoors. Otherwise, it can be left for as long as you like to decorate and to make your house smell nice, as a Christmas decoration.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Gingerbread house

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We are Irmi and Andy.

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