Gingerbread Extravaganza!

I hope everyone had Happy Holidays and a wonderful start to the new year!

This Christmas, my most noteworthy baking creation is a gingerbread house modeled after Bob’s family’s home in McKinney, TX. Thanks to Marian from sweetopia.net, I found a fantastic glue-like icing (http://sweetopia.net/2011/12/gingerbread-house-royal-icing-video-kitchenaid-7-quart-mixer-giveaway/) that held our house together perfectly and some other gingerbread making techniques. I encourage you to check out her site for very helpful tutorials for decorating.

The adventure began when I begged Bob to make a gingerbread house with me. Little did I know, or rather, I should have realized, he would not settle for a quaint, whimsical cottage. As I found the structural gingerbread recipes online and stocked the kitchen with our necessities, Bob designed away at his desktop using the Solidworks program he learned in freshman engineering. Eight hours passed and I waited patiently to start my share.

It was 1 am before the rest of the crew was put to work. Katherine helped cut out templates, Erin taped some large cuts together and the pups enjoyed the fired.

Structural Gingerbread House Dough Recipe

from about.com: http://easteuropeanfood.about.com/od/crossculturaldesserts/r/gingerbread.htm

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups light corn syrup (or dark corn syrup for a darker house)
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar (or dark brown sugar for a darker house)
  • 1 1/4 cups margarine
  • 9 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

We worked away until 5 am, but it was time to hit the hay. The last templates were cut in the morning.This piece was a challenge because it was larger than all of our baking sheets. Thankfully, it baked well on the parchment paper/foil combination paper.

Next comes the fun part! After Bob cut edges here and there to make all the measurements exact to his plans, it was time to start assembling the house.

It definitely took more than two steps, but VoilΓ …

This view helps give you an idea of its massive size.

My favorite job was decorating my trees. I learned this technique from Marian on sweetopia.net. It’s quite simple. A sugar ice cream cone and a #18 star decorating tip. It gets easier over time. I must say that my trees in the back yard were better quality! I’ll need to figure out how to make my food coloring create a darker green. I’ll probably have to buy a different selection of colors. I simply used tootsie rolls and icing to represent the landscaping in their front yard.

We made it this far before I had to catch a 7 am flight on December 22nd to Las Vegas to meet the family in Utah for Christmas! The rest of the structure was left in Bob’s hands. Luckily, his sisters were there to help. Bob baked the rest of the gingerbread templates for the roof and assembled them all on his own! Now that is dedication! Plus, he has a hard time stopping a project once he’s started…especially one this cool!

And starting the cinnamon square cereal shingles…

THAT’S MY MAN!

Erin finished all the shingles, and it was time for a gingerbread break. A few days later, on the 27th, I was back and Bob and I created a special Christmas day for his family and me…A Very Kerry Christmas! We ate oatmeal pancakes for breakfast and homemade chicken pot pies for dinner! Then, I was ready to help finish decorations. We paid close attention to details. We dyed white fondant to a pale yellow to make the windows appear to be showing lights from inside. I used a pasta roller to roll the fondant into thin strips to cut the windows.

The Back View…


AND IT’S DONE! After hours of strenuous work, the reward was worth it!

Check out Bob’s beautiful icicles!

A Very Merry Christmas Creation with a happy ending!

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “Gingerbread Extravaganza!

  1. I am *seriously* impressed with you two! Can I be your friends? =D I’m thinking we would get along *very* well.
    Thank you for the links – I’m glad I could help with the icing and trees. If you’d like a darker green btw, Americolor sells a forest green color. I love it! You could technically add black to some green or even blue or brown, but it’s never the same as the forest green in a bottle.

    Thanks SO much for sharing this beautiful house! Happy new year!

    • Thanks so much! I’m really happy I was able to share with you! I learned a lot about gingerbread techniques from you and knew you would like to see the final result. Your welcome for the links! I wanted to make sure to give you credit for the recipes and style!

      And, YES! We can be friends! I am still pretty amateur baker, but I love trying new recipes, and just like you, I just recently got my first KitchenAid! I would have thought I would have to be older before I had my own! πŸ™‚

  2. Brenda says:

    Soooooo proud of your culinary accomplishments!! If you submit a photo to a magazine, you could win a prize! Excellent job, both of you! Happy New Year

    • Thanks so much, Brenda! You were one of the people who first got me interesting in cooking and baking! Maybe I will consider submitting it to some magazines, but we didn’t do as much decorating as normal gingerbreads…because it is a life like house! πŸ™‚

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s