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Thursday, 20 December 2012

Gingerbread house

On a rare day off from work I decided to attempt to make a gingerbread house, attempt being the operative word! 

I will post the recipe I was following below. Basically, it all fell apart when I tried to put the roof on. I used the templates in the back of the GBBO cook book. 

Ingredients for gingerbread
700g plain flour
2 tbsp ground ginger
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground mixed spice
pinch of salt
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
350g unsalted butter
300g dark muscovado sugar
8 tbsp golden syrup

4 clear boiled sweets.
2 bags of white chocolate buttons
Ingredients for royal icing
3 egg whites
few drops of lemon juice
550g icing sugar 

Method
1. Sift the flour, ginger, cinnamon, mixed spice, salt and bicarb into a mixing bowl. 
2. Put the butter, sugar and syrup into a saucepan. Melt until smooth then add to the flour mixture. Mix with a wooden spoon to form a dough.
3. Tip out onto a floured surface and knock into a ball. Wrap in cling film and chill for 20 minutes in the fridge. 
4. Divide into five equal pieces. Start by making the two walls. These are made out of one portion. Roll out the dough between two sheets of baking paper. Set the template on top and cut out. Cut out windows from the wall and fill the gap with crushed boiled sweets.  Bake for 8-10 minutes at 180.  Leave to cool. 

5. Cut out the front wall of the house from one portion of rolled out dough. Cut out the window and fill with a crushed sweet again.  Also cut out a door, but don't throw it away! Bake for 8-10 minutes at 180. Make the back wall in the same way, but without a door and bake. Roll out the last two pieces and use for each roof piece, bake. 
6. Use any dough trimmings to make Christmas trees or gingerbread men! 
7. To make the royal icing, mix together egg whites and lemon juice. Gradually add the icing sugar until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and not run off. 
8. When ready to assemble, put the icing in a piping bag. Pipe a thick rope of icing down the short side of one wall piece. Place at a 90 degree angle against the front (making sure the window is facing out.) Attach the other wall in the same way. Prop a glass or jar against the walls to keep them from slipping. Attach the fourth wall in the same way. 
9. Once the icing is set, ice the door onto the front of the house. 
10. Spread icing over the roof sections and decorate with white chocolate buttons. When the base of the house is firmly set, pipe along the top of the roof and walls. Lift the roof sections into place and hold until set. Pipe along the top ridge to join the roof together. 
11. Decorate however you want and in theory... ta da! You will have a lovely gingerbread house! 

However, mine was not entirely successful! I managed to construct the base okay...





















But once I tried to attach the roof panels everything started breaking and there was icing everywhere! This is as close to a fully constructed house as I could get... 
Ta da (ish)























I am determined to try again and make a proper house but for now I'm fairly pleased with my first attempt. Until next time... X Bo

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