Gingerbread House in the Ginger Beard House

The house has smelled delightful all day with the aromas of gingerbread baking in the oven. I treated myself to an early Christmas present in the shape of this silicon gingerbread house mould from Lakeland and decided today was the day to get baking and building.

Christmas gingerbread house

Making gingerbread is incredibly simple. I’d never made it before today but it’s pretty much a case of melt this, stir that and squish into the tin. Here comes the recipe! Video of us assembling the house below…

Gingerbread House Recipe

180g butter
125g brown sugar
300g golden syrup
500g plain flour
Half tsp salt
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Few rasps of fresh grated nutmeg
1 tbsp bicarbonate of soda

1. Preheat the oven to 170C.
2. Melt butter in a large saucepan over a gentle heat, swirl from time to time to avoid it browning.
3. Remove butter from the heat and stir in the sugar and syrup. If it doesn’t combine quickly then switch to a whisk and it’ll amalgamate eventually with a bit of welly.
4. Add in all the dry ingredients and mix til fully blended into a thick dough.
5. Tip out on to a board and knead in a little extra flour til the dough is completely smooth.
6. Tear off chunks of dough and squish into the mould, taking care to leave no air bubbles and get right up into the corners.
7. Bake for 25-35 minutes or til firm to the touch.
8. Allow to cool completely before removing from the mould.

The pieces are stuck together with Royal Icing which is made as so:

Royal Icing Recipe

500g icing sugar
1 tsp cream of tartar
3 egg whites

1. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.
2. Gradually add in the egg whites, whisking with an electric mixer. You may not need all three so go easy and keep mixing before adding more.
3. The mixture should be a thick paste that holds its shape. Add more icing sugar if it doesn’t.
4. Put into a piping bag (or plastic sandwich bag) and chop a millimeter or two off the end.

And here is how to assemble (excluding the bit where the front of the house falls over at the start, not recommended)

The house is decorated with pink smarties, white chocolate buttons and rice paper snowflakes. Now, to destroy it. Please excuse me, om nom nom.

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