Gingerbread house!

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Yup, that’s this years gingerbread house done.  😀

I used the receipe over at BBC Good Food, but I used a little bit less ginger, and added cinnamon and allspice instead.

Now – I’m not that great with measurement, and generally just wing it, instead of measure… but I must have gone absolutely crazy with the bi-carb soda as mine rose like it was bread!

Nevermind, I wasn’t looking for perfection, I was looking for charm… and for it to smell awesome as it was baking.  😀

As you can see, there’s not a straight wall in sight, as it rose a lot more than I expected.  I did however stick two roof parts in the oven first… which was good, as I had planned to do checkered windows, but that plan went out the… eh… window, when I realised it wasn’t gonna work with it rising as much as it was.  Instead I just used heart shaped cookie cutters for the windows.

And I wanted “glass” in the windows… quick google, and it tells me to use “hard candy”.  Grrrr.  No hard candy in the house, not even a forlorn lolly.  But I spot the Tangfastic (how can I not – we got a huge giant box of it), and figure “why not?”.  Sour sweeties washed and cut, and then placed into the window openings.  And back into the oven!  If you’re gonna give this a go, keep an eye on it, as it melts so quickly!  Stick it in the fridge works wonders to cool it afterwards, so it can be removed from the tray.

The house took me forever and a day… well, that’s a lie… more like forever and a week.  Not doing so good at the moment, and doing any little thing really knocks me out… so baked one day, stuck together a different day, yet another day for the roof, and finally a different day again for the decorating.

I used caramelised sugar to stick it together (as I don’t have the patience for any icing to set), and the cheapest wheat cereal I could find for the roof (hey – I don’t eat cereal, wasn’t gonna spend a bomb).  I just mixed icing sugar with lemon juice to stick the roof decorations on.

The “snow” was however made with whisked egg whites, icing sugar and lemon juice, and it was great fun to to use, as it was just the right consistency for it to drip a wee bit.

I was looking for a rustic charm, not covered in sweeties and all colourful… and I think it worked out just perfect.  😀

Perfection is way over-rated, and with it’s wonky walls, cracks and gaps, I think it’s doing just fine…  and even better than that when it’s lit up:

(sorry… had to stick copyright onto it… otherwise I will just see people trying to pass it off as their own in Christmas competitions next year.  *sigh*  Shouldn’t be necessary, but it is, I see people use other peoples creations and claim them as their own all the time)

The Tangfastic windows came out ace!  With fun little bubbles, that makes them look even more cosy than they would have otherwise.

Sorry, I got no template… I just winged it from the fifth one down here (isn’t it adorable?).  I didn’t do too badly… only thing I had to trim was the porch fences, as I’d made them way too high.

As I’m not decorating this year (as the kitties would break everything), it’s been a lovely Christmassy edition to the kitchen (and it smells heavenly).  The leftover dough was made into cookies and eaten (they were very yum!).

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