Gingerbread-house: the recipe / Das Rezept

 

✴✴✴    Gingerbread-House    ✴✴✴

250 gr. honey

100 gr. sugar

1 egg

50 gr. butter

100 gr. ground hazelnut

350 gr. flour

½ sachet potassium carbonate

mix ground spices, like cinnamon, nutmeg, orange-peel, cardamom, anisseed, clove and dark chocolate-powder

several egg-whites and confectioners sugar as ‚mortar’, sweets for decoration

Heat honey, sugar and butter in a pan until melted, add spices. Mix flour with nuts in a bowl, add an egg and the honey-sugar-butter-spices-mix and the potassium dissolved in a tablespoon of water. Mix and let stand for at least a night.

Roll out the dough to 0,5 – 1 cm and cut out a front and a back part, two sides and two roof parts, using the templates and a knife. Also cut out doors and windows as you like, probably some trees and other things you want to add to the scenery.

Bake for 12 to 15 mins. at 175°C. Let cool completely, so it hardens.

Now it’s time to make ‚mortar’, beating egg-whites and sugar until it’s stiff and spoon the icing into a small plastic-bag where you cut off an edge. I always use toyblocks to stabilize the gingerbread-walls while trying to ‚glue’ the house with the icing. And experience showed it’s wise to let the icing-mortar between the walls dry before you try and set up the roof, otherwise everything slowly glides and falls apart, the tension on the walls is too much.

After letting the construction dry comes the fun part: decorate the house with sweets, glued onto walls and roof with icing. It’s always amazing how many sweets per square decimeter are possible.

The other fun part is destruction-time: After Chrismas the kids are allowed to loot the house, the bits of gingerbread left for the adults can be softened in a tin with an appleslice or made into a crumble, if not too dusty ;-))

I have to make a gingerbread-house every year, my son insists on it, though he only really likes the fun parts. Baking is so la-la, constructing might be interesting, but frankly, children are of no help then, it’s a bit like building a house of cards. Usually it’s a weekend-project, Friday preparing the dough, Saturday baking, Sunday morning its construction-time and Sunday afternoon its time to decorate. I think because it’s quite a lot of work, my Mum only made it twice (she is not too crazy about baking anyway) and lots of people buy prebaked houses which only have to be decorated. I used to work in a youth center, there they had a giant house made of wood, which was only decorated with sweets and looted at the Christmas party as a game, then cleaned and re-used the next year.

The templates are self-made after the shape of the typical medieval houses here in Northern Germany, in our family we call them ‚Lübeck-houses’, after the city my husband comes from. And you can add a light inside the house to shine out of the windows, I use a battery-powered bicycle light.

3 Responses to “Gingerbread-house: the recipe / Das Rezept”


  1. 1 karin October 12, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    Hi Steffi

    we will attempt this, the girls have mastered cupcakes and i managed to bake a castle cake with four turrets that looked halfway good, Amber at least said she was pleased with her birthday cake

    other than that we all good, John and I had great summer cycling in yorkshire (girls with grandparents), Amber started violin lessons, i did 4 triathlons, Helena does more complex sentences than i do and John is mega stressed at work at the moment. Oh and percy the cat is still eating everything but thankfully also good at catching mice…

    hope you all well
    maybe see you around xmas…

    karin

    • 2 moflower October 15, 2009 at 7:00 pm

      Hi Karin! Wow, a castle cake is something I’ve never attempted, but once a pirate-ship, impressive ey? We’d be happy to see you around Xmas/ NYEve, basically we’ve planned the same ‘party’ with the neighbours as last year, nothing spectacular but family-friendly and relaxed, so: feel welcome! Your comment made me spend hours updating the blog, if you want to know what we did this summer, go read! I think I should pick up the phone one day…;-)) you know me. Love, Steffi


  1. 1 Under construction / Baustelle « morningflower’s blog Trackback on December 6, 2009 at 5:56 pm

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