Another Christmas tradition in our house is to make a Gingerbread house.
A few years ago I would buy a pre-baked Gingerbread House and my daughters would decorate it with the limited decorations that would come with it. These were expensive kits to buy and the houses were small and really not worth the money.
Things are different now as I learnt that Gingerbread houses really aren’t hard to make from scratch and it’s much more fun to make them yourself and my daughters decorate it with sweets and chocolates of their choice.
Decorating the house is a great activity for children near Christmas.
There is a great ‘Gingerbread House’ song on You Tube that we play whilst decorating the house. You can find it here.
This is how I make the house:
First I download a Gingerbread House template from the internet. There are loads to choose from, but I downloaded this one from ‘Delicious Magazine’. I then cut out the templates.
I made the gingerbread, using the gingerbread recipe here. I doubled the recipe.
I rolled the gingerbread out and laid the paper templates onto it and cut the shapes out, using a knife.
I put the shapes on greased baking trays and cooked for 10 -15 minutes, Gas Mark 3 /160C / 325F and then transferred them to a cooling tray. I put a boiled sweet into each window before I cooked it, but beware, it can make it hard to get them off the baking sheet after cooking. I find it easier to let them cool before I remove them when I use the boiled sweets.
(I had a problem removing the sweets and one of my windows broke, but we will decorate it so it won’t be seen).
When all the pieces have cooled, mix some icing sugar with a tiny drop of water and stir until really thick. Use this icing to ‘glue’ your house together Apply the icing thickly and it will look like snow on the joins.
It helps if you support the walls while it is drying. I used tins etc. to support mine.
I leave it overnight, to make sure the icing has set well before decorating.
Then the fun begins…..the decorating.
You can decorate with whatever you want…sweets, biscuits, chocolate buttons etc. Use thick icing to stick the sweets onto the house. I let my daughters loose with a piping bag too and they have loads of fun with it.
My daughters decorated one side of the house each.
I think my daughters did a really good job of decorating the house, don’t you? They certainly ate a lot of sweets while they were decorating it.
It looks too nice to eat!
Please let me know if you make a Gingerbread House this Christmas too.
Thank you for reading my blog today.