Tiny little gingerbread houses together make a village, which makes me happy. I’ve always had a slight issue with the lone gingerbread house. It’s all a bit Hansel and Gretel to me. I worry about who might jump out of the woods.
So here we have a little village which is about 483 times easier to put together than a huge gingerbread house. I honestly can’t tell you how speedy these little houses go up, once you’ve baked them. And a dusting of icing sugar makes everything look perfectly festive. Oh and there’s even a little video if you like that kind of thing. The template, if you would like to use mine, is here – gingerbread house template.
Lots of great recipes like this in my books, Recipes from a Normal Mum, (available on Amazon, at The Works, Waterstones, WHSmith, The Book Depository and many smaller outlets) and The Power of Frozen (available through Amazon).
Last December: Mince pie brownies and Pulled jerk turkey sliders and Christmas pudding crackers and Fail safe mince pies and Boxing day pie and Christmas pudding flapjack and Last minute tropical trashy Christmas cake and Sausage,onion and apple sesame plait and Cherry eccles cakes and Cinnamon apple pie and Mushroom, leek and Stilton soup and Firecracker
Two years ago: Two minute marinade for chicken and Melted snowman biscuits and Egg nog truffles and Chocolate biscuit Christmas pudding and Drunken Amaretto mince pies and Cheese concertina loaf and Hot chocolate on a stick and Sausage, sage and squash lasagne and Chocolate hazelnut granola and Orange and cranberry loaf and Chocolate ganache tart.
Yield: 5 houses
- 230g salted butter
- 180g soft dark brown sugar
- 90g honey
- 550g plain flour
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 3 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 egg whites
- 450g icing sugar
- 2 tsp lemon juice
This recipe makes 5 houses. Begin by cutting out the 3 templates needed to make each gingerbread house and put to one side for later. Melt the butter, brown sugar and honey together in a saucepan. While they melt, sieve the flour and mix with the bicarbonate of soda, ginger and cinnamon then make a well in the centre. When the butter, sugar and honey have melted stir to combine and pour into the flour mixture. Carefully stir the mixture together (it will be hot) until combined and when the mixture is cool enough, use your hands to pull together the mixture to create a stiff dough. Divide the dough equally into 5 balls. Roll the first portion of dough, between two pieces of grease proof paper, to about 1/2 cm thick. Then using the templates, cut out 2 of each to create the 6 pieces needed to make each house (Cut out windows and a door at this stage or simply pipe them on after instead). Repeat this 4 more times to create enough pieces to make 5 gingerbread houses and bake each batch for 8-10 minutes in a preheated oven at 180C/160C fan/gas mark 4. While the gingerbread pieces cool, make the icing by whisking the egg whites until frothy and then add the icing sugar one tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Next stir in the lemon juice and whisk until the mixture is thick and holds a stiff peak. Cover the icing with a tea towel until ready to use. To assemble the houses fill a piping bag with the royal icing and pipe a line along the edges of the back piece and hold the sides in place. Next pipe a line along the front edges and place on the front piece. If necessary use cocktail sticks to hold the sides in place. Finally pipe the icing along the top edges and place on the roof. Finish by decorating with your favourite sweets or pipe a design with the icing.
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