Christmas is the time to eat a lot of delicious things, such as legs of ham and full sized turkeys, lots of candy and lollies, cookies and alcohol. It’s usually around now that waistlines start to get just a smidgen bigger, and we decide that come the New Year we will diet like we’ve never dieted before! Because of this, it is completely acceptable for you to walk through a supermarket checkout with nothing but twenty bags of lollies and everyone will think it’s adorable that you are spending the day making a massive gingerbread house.
Try this any other time of the year that isn’t Easter, and you’re going to get judging looks!
I know this little tidbit for a fact, because my husband and I did exactly this last Sunday, with the goal in mind to make gingerbread houses with my husband’s grandmother. It was a wonderful, homely and downright Christmas-y feeling day that took about 7 lazy hours of cutting, “gluing”, decorating and eating gingerbread, but it was worth it to be able to present the wonderful gingerbread house you see pictured above!
Now since this post is pretty much a glorified way I can present our kick ass gingerbread house to you, my lovely readers – and since it’s a super special grandmother only recipe, I thought I would give you a few tried and tested tips on how to put a perfect gingerbread house together, rather than a step by step recipe. You too can create a wonderful gingerbread house perfect for a witch to live in ala Hansel and Gretel by following these simple tips and tricks.
Be Inspired and Choose a Theme
Pinterest is absolutely full of amazingly decorated and crafted gingerbread houses, and while they are too perfect to follow directly, it’s a great place to get inspiration for what you want your own gingerbread house to look like. Research your favourite colour themes or house ideas and decide on the style of gingerbread house you are going to go for, and buy your lollies and decorations accordingly. This year, Byron and I decided to go with a classic rainbow buffet for our gingerbread house, so we went a bit nuts on the smarties and the candies, but you can choose any kind of theme and make sure you stick to it!
Now that you have a theme or colour scheme in mind, buy accordingly! It’s not all about what lollies you personally like to eat, it’s about what will work best on a gingerbread house. I personally hate liquorice, but liquorice allsorts make a delightful tiling for a gingerbread roof! Think of what you are going to use as a door as well, for windows, a chimney and even for a front garden! We used green jelly jubes as bushes in the front garden, and tiny candy canes as fencing around the front. It was super effective and is suitable for every kind of sweet tooth.
We made three gingerbread houses altogether, and one of them was a complete disaster! The roof fell in because the jubes we used were too heavy and we were too impatient to put the roof on in the first place and the icing hadn’t set properly. When putting your own gingerbread house together, make sure you let the icing do its work and dry properly before continuing with the roof and the decorations, or it might all fall to pieces – literally!
Make it Real!
Byron’s grandmother informed us that his cousin once told her about a gingerbread decorating instruction manual online indicated that the gingerbread house should be made of cardboard, the lollies should be glued on with actual glue, and used only as a centrepiece in the middle of the Christmas table. We were absolutely aghast! What a waste of time and lollies, and not to mention super mean to the guest who would think it was a real gingerbread house! My last recommendation to you lovely readers it to make it a real gingerbread house out of gingerbread cookies, glue made of icing and real lollies stuck to it. There is nothing more horrible than a fake gingerbread house!
Show me some of your gingerbread houses! Leave the photos in the comment section below!