Sunday, December 27, 2009

December 2009 Daring Bakers Challenge #35: Home for the Holidays, Gingerbread House

This month in the holiday season, so we bake what will make our heart glow: The Gingerbread House!
Even I have to admit that it's not what I usually make (well, the tradition is different) but it's a great fun to do it.
As I never made it before, my first gingerbread house is very hard for me. I had a problem with the dough, actually because I still got a cold, so I don't have enough strength to roll the dough (and the dough for the gingerbread is quite stiff). You can see that my gingerbread is a bit too thick, and because of this the roof is too heavy. Even I held the roof for half an hour until the icing harden and the roof stick to the house, haha, and when I took my hand out the roof just slid down, well luckily that I saw it before it came all the way down >*<. So, my mom she's clever enough to cut the cardboard for me to prevent the roof from sliding down, and I had to say that I almost gave up if she didn't help me. I use the house template from the book: The Good Cookie: Over 250 Delicious Recipes from Simple to Sublime by Tish Boyle, it's beautiful, and the size of the house is just right.
Well, I think it's a great challenge for me, and I'm happy with the results, do you agree with me.

"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."

-The snow is falling-

Scandinavian Gingerbread (Pepparkakstuga)
from The Great Scandinavian Baking Book by Beatrice Ojakangas

1 cup butter, room temperature [226g]
1 cup brown sugar, well packed [220g]
2 tablespoons cinnamon
4 teaspoons ground ginger
3 teaspoons ground cloves
2 teaspoons baking soda
½ cup boiling water (I use 3/4cup)
5 cups all-purpose flour [875g]

1. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until blended. Add the cinnamon, ginger and cloves to the flour. Mix the baking soda with the boiling water and add to the dough along with the flour.

Mix to make a stiff dough. If necessary add more water, a tablespoon at a time. Chill 2 hours or overnight.

2. Cut patterns for the house, making patterns for the roof, front walls, gabled walls, chimney and door out of cardboard.

3. Roll the dough out on a large, ungreased baking sheet and place the patterns on the dough. Mark off the various pieces with a knife, cut required shapes and transferred these to the baking sheet.

4. Preheat the oven to 375'F (190'C). Bake for 12 to 15 minutes until the cookie dough feels firm. After baking, again place the pattern on top of the gingerbread and trim the shapes, cutting the edges with a straight-edged knife. Leave to cool on the baking sheet.

Royal Icing: (I made about 5 batch of this)

1 large egg white
3 cups (330g) powdered sugar
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon almond extract

Beat all ingredients until smooth, adding the powdered sugar gradually to get the desired consistency. Pipe on pieces and allow to dry before assembling. If you aren't using it all at once you can keep it in a small bowl, loosely covered with a damp towel for a few hours until ready to use. You may have to beat it slightly to get it an even consistency if the top sets up a bit. Piped on the house, this will set up hard over time.

December 2009 Daring Bakers Challenge #35:
Home for the Holidays, Gingerbread House


  1. Hi Am really impressed by your passion for baking. Eventhough you had a cold but u still manage to made such a beautiful gingerbread house. Love to learn from you more. Thanks for the sharing. A very merry christmas and advance happy 2010 new year..

  2. Hi...

    I saw yr link fr Gert's blog...OMG...U r so talented to bake this beautiful gingerbread house. I am soooooo amazed..When I hv a cold, I can only make muffins...ha ha..

    Good job!!


  3. Wow... really impressed with your talent, passion and patience. This is a really gorgeous gingerbread house. I wish I could do the same... You have never fail to impress me.


  4. Pook.. what a nice gingerbread house!You're so talented and full of patience. gingy man, gingy lady and gingy baby are very cute as well.

    keep on baking...!

    Happy New year.!

  5. Your house is gorgeous! I love how you made a gingerbread family to go with it. Plus, they are to! You rock!

    I hope you feel better soon.

    Natalie @ gluten a go go



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