Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Gingerbread House to Celebrate the Holidays

The December 2009 Daring Bakers’ challenge was brought to you by Anna of Very Small Anna and Y of Lemonpi. They chose to challenge Daring Bakers’ everywhere to bake and assemble a gingerbread house from scratch. They chose recipes from Good Housekeeping and from The Great Scandinavian Baking Book as the challenge recipes.

I was extremely keen to participate in this month's challenge especially as we were asked to do a gingerbread house. I've never done anything like this before so it would be really something as far as I was concerned. Both Anna and Y had posted their own gingerbread dough recipe. However we were also allowed to use any other recipe of our own choosing. I randomly picked a recipe from BBC Good Food and also used their gingerbread house template.

I really had great fun putting the entire house together. The house templates were baked and kept in the fridge a week ago. During the mid week, I scouted around for different candies, cookies, etc that would be used to decorate the house. My niece and nephew who happened to be in town this week helped out by putting up the wood pile and fence around the gingerbread house. They in turn had their own pieces of gingerbread cookie to decorate whilst I was assembling mine. I think for every piece of candy that went onto their cookie, one piece would be popped into the mouth .... that's kids for you!

Anyway I also wish everyone of you a happy New Year and hope you have a great kick start to usher in 2010.





Gingerbread House

For the Gingerbread Dough

Ingredients:

250g unsalted butter
200g dark muscovado sugar
7 tbsp golden syrup
600g plain flour
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
4 tsp ground ginger

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. Put a sheet of baking paper on your work surface and roll about one quarter of the dough to the thickness of 1/4". 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) 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.

6) Decorate the gingerbread house with a variety of candies, sweets and chocolates. For the roof, I used oat bran crackers for a more realistic effect.



32 comments:

Angie's Recipes said...

What a lovely ginger house!

Natalie, aka "Sheltie Girl" said...

Your house is too adorable! Great job!

Natalie @ Gluten A Go Go

Jill said...

I love the shape of your gingerbread house and the Pocky sticks are so cute for the door!! :)

pigpigscorner said...

It's beautiful! Well done!

Basht said...

Ohh it's so pretty!

Caroline said...

how adorable, love the use of Pocky! Happy Holidays!

Ellie said...

What a lovely gingerbread house! Love the high roof and the festive colours :)

s said...

such a cute little house..very pretty!

Karen @ Citrus and Candy said...

Oh wow I love the colours! This is one house that I could happily live in forever :)

edith said...

Hey this is such a lovely house. I can see lots of love put into it. Merry Christmas!

Dharm said...

Lovely Gingerbread house ! Well Done!

chef_d said...

What a nice looking gingerbread house! :)

Aparna said...

Your gingerbread house looks so colourful and pretty.
I had never made anythinglike this either, till this challenge.

Happy Holidays and Best Wishes for a very Happy New Year!

Isabelle said...

it's Beautiful House ! Very good jo for this challenge :)

Dodol & Mochi said...

That's a really colorful, handsome gingerbread house! It'd be sweet if I can live in it forever ... Haa ...

Pei-Lin

natalia said...

Ciao ! You really did find lots of wonderful decorations !! Great job ! Tanti Auguri !

Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction said...

Your house looks beautiful! Great job!

Anita said...

I love the icing coming down the roof and the cute Christmas tree too. Great work!

nithya praveen said...

Lovely one....loved the shape of your gingerbread house.the the cute sticks are outstanding:)

Monika said...

Wow, your house looks awesome! I love how your gingerbread dough turned out dark in color. The contrast between the dark house and colorful candy is great.

Best wishes!

Big Boys Oven said...

wow what a beauty, so well constructed!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Your house is so pretty and well-decorated

Best wishes for 2010!

Cheers,

Rosa

Fahrenheit 350° said...

That is adorable! I loooove the roof!

Clumbsy Cookie said...

It's a lovely house you have there! I love all the candy you used and the roof is pretty cool too!

noobcook said...

your gingerbread house is so pretty and detailed! Happy Holidays!

rose said...

Hello
Wow this Gingerbread House looks awesome and I have never seen like this house.Now I will definitely try to make this.I hope it will look like in this image.Thank you very much for this wonderful post.

geruchloser knoblauch

El said...

It's beautiful. You did a great job. I've always wanted to try making one of these...maybe next year. I just love it. Have a very Happy New Year!

juanitatortilla said...

That just looks adorable! Wishing you a great 2010 :)
-Juanita

Sophie said...

Waw!! Your colourful gingerbread house looks stunning!!

I love your chocolate Mikado door!! hahahaha,.....


MMMMMMMMMMMM,...Have a Happy 2010!!!

Ju (The Little Teochew) said...

Your attention to detail is amazing, Jo! Loved the small touches like the M&Ms on the roof top and the Pokey sticks for logs!!! It would make a perfect centre piece! Please, don't ever stop blogging. Wishing you and your loved ones a joyful, wonderful 2010!

Ju

bake in paris said...

Totally in love with the details. Delighted with the snow-pouring rooftop and all the decorative ornaments.

Happy new year!

Sawadee from Bangkok,
Kris

Ingrid said...

It came out adorable! So sweet!

Happy New Year to you!
~ingrid

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