Monday, December 3, 2012

Homemade Gingerbread Houses

On the 3rd day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...homemade gingerbread houses!

So often, gingerbread houses are made out of graham crackers.  That is still fun and the same amount of candy is probably consumed by the architects, but there is something fun and festive about making your gingerbread house out of real, edible gingerbread!
Attached is the link to the Google document for the pattern I used.  You can create any size or design of gingerbread house you want though - I used this recipe in elementary school to create an entire castle for a school project! 

2 ¾ C flour                                                            

1/2 tsp salt                                                

3 tsp baking powder                        

1 tsp ginger                                                

1 tsp cinnamon                                   

1/8 tsp cloves
1/3 C brown sugar, packed
1 egg, beaten
1/2 C vegetable oil
2/3 C molasses

Mix together flour, salt, baking powder, and spices. 
Add brown sugar and mix well. 
Add beaten egg, oil, and molasses. 
Mix thoroughly and chill for several hours or overnight. 

Preheat the oven to 300.
Roll dough evenly in oiled cookie sheet (11 ½ x 18) and bake for 20-30 minutes. 
Place pattern on hot bread and cut immediately. 
Take away edge pieces, and then remove house pieces for cooling on rack or paper towels.

The gingerbread should be very hard when cool. The roof sections will collapse or break off if the dough is not thoroughly baked. 
The pieces may easily be laid back on the cookie sheet and baked for an additional 10 minutes if needed. 
Do not bake the gingerbread on a really "moist" day - the gingerbread may not harden correctly.

When cool, the pieces should be stacked flat between pieces of paper towel. Store in a dry place. 
Do not keep the pieces airtight or freeze them. 

When making the gingerbread houses, you will want to use a royal icing recipe.  Royal icing hardens and keeps all of the pieces in place.  It is edible, but does not really taste great once it hardens.

(Please ignore our lack of professional decorating skills!)

*This recipe is from my mom.

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