Gingerbread House/Nhà Bánh Gừng

 

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I still remember how excited I was when my dad baked and brought home a beautiful gingerbread house for Christmas. It looked fantastic and smelled wonderful. Years later, I now know that wonderful smell is the result of baking with a mixture of spices including ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove powders. Baking gingerbread cookies leaves the house smells amazing just like how all baking aromas turning your house into a home (well… except when it’s burnt 🙂 )

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I decided to try a recipe I consolidated from consulting a few websites to suit my preference and what I have on hand. Those links are here:

http://www.savourydays.com/cach-lam-nha-banh-gung-cong-thuc-moi-kem-video/
https://www.howtocookthat.net/public_html/christmas-gingerbread-house-recipe/
http://tenplay.com.au/channel-ten/masterchef/recipes/hansel-and-gretel-house

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I only made a not-to-small gingerbread house, and I made two. They are indeed small compared to my dad’s giant one (link here).

The recipe is enough for these 2 gingerbread houses and about 20 cookies.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

750g plain flour
270g butter
100g glucose syrup
350g honey
190g brown sugar
2 tablespoons ginger powder
1.5 tablespoon cinnamon powder
1.5 teaspoon nutmeg powder
1.5 teaspoon clover powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 egg

For Royal Icing:

4 cups icing sugar
3 tablespoons meringue powder
10 tablespoons water

Plus extra assorted lollies for decoration.

Ingredients

Method:

For the gingerbread dough:

  1. Combine all dry ingredients and mix well.
  2. Combine butter, sugar in a pot and cook on low heat until all sugar has dissolved. Add glucose syrup and honey. Mix well then remove from heat.
  3. Pour this liquid mixture into the dry ingredients. Fold in to mix everything well forming a smooth ball. This is the dough. Allow it to be at room temperature and it’s ready to be used.
  4. Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 0.3 cm. Cut the dough according to the templates for the house.
    My templates include:
    – 2x roof pieces (16cm x 13cm)
    – 2x side wall (14cm long x 8cm wide + 2 window 2cm x 2cm on each side
    – 2x front and back wall(14cm wide x 18cm tall- trim top to form triangle top halves)
    – Chimney(4cm wide x 5cm tall- trim bottom edge to fit on to roof)
    – 6 window eaves(2.5cm x 1cm)
  5. Bake at 180°C for about 10 minutes or until the edges start to brown.
  6. Once taken out of the oven and still warm, quickly use a knife to trim the edges so that they are straight and run through all the windows  to make sure they detach properly.
  7. Allow the cookies to cool completely and firm up before assembling.

While waiting, prepare the royal icing:

  1. Mix all ingredients and whisk at low speed to combine, then increase speed and whisk until icing is thick, and shiny. The consistency can be adjusted by adding more water to thin it and conversely add more icing sugar to thicken. Keep icing tightly sealed and minimise exposing to open air when not in use.

Now the fun part really start: assembling the house and decorate, however you like 🙂

Building the house

Put the house together first of course, use small jars to help stabilise the walls if needed. I had some lollies sheets (similar to roll-ups) that I cut up and put on the inside of the windows. Alternatives include gelatin sheet, isomalt or…. leave them open 🙂

House 1

I drew semi-circles on the roof to create “tiles” pattern, added fence with prezels sticks. I used coloured icing to make the plants and flowers on the wall of the house. I gave this house a little chair but it’s covered in “snow”.

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The two houses next to each other.

 

 

 

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The two house from the top. See something very Australian here? Although the houses are covered in “snow”, it’s all green on the ground. As I am typing this, it’s a boiling 36 degrees Celcius outside. That’s how we do Christmas here ;))))

 

House 2

The second house is a little smaller than the first. I tried a different style of “fencing” because I found the previous way a tad unstable. Also, the second time around, I did remember to keep the doors and the windows 🙂

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I have to resist the urge to break down the house everything I walk pass them because they smell too good, despite being all wrapped up. By the way, now I have an extra job in the house – that is keep checking on my gingerbread house and try to keep them away from all the unexpected ants, they are everywhere thanks to this hot weather!!!

 

Merry Christmas 🙂

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One thought on “Gingerbread House/Nhà Bánh Gừng

  1. Pingback: Gingerbread cookies | Memory Lane

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