Ingredients

Gingerbread

4 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

2 ½ teaspoons ground ginger

1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground cloves

¾ cup plus 2 tbsp. butter at room temperature

1 cup brown sugar

¾ cup molasses

1 egg

Royal Icing

4 cups icing sugar

4 egg whites

1 tablespoon glycerine

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions

Gingerbread

1. Preheat oven to 350&#176F.

2. Sift together dry ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside.

3. Cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg and the molasses. Continue to beat until smooth and well combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix dough until it just comes together. Turn dough out on a lightly floured surface. Knead by hand until smooth. Use dough immediately or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

4. Create your own design for a gingerbread house or follow a pattern. You can also use this dough to make cookies. Bake cookies for 10 to 15 minutes depending on size and shape.

5. Begin making the Gingerbread House by cutting parchment paper to fit the baking sheets. Divide the dough in half. To easily transfer the dough to the baking sheet, roll it out directly on the paper. Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Transfer parchment paper to baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes then cut out pattern pieces. Lower oven temperature to 300&#176F. Leave dough on baking sheets and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let dough cool completely before removing from pan. Discard the excess dough or use it to make decorations such as a stone path.

6. Use a cake board large enough for your design and a piping bag fitted with a small star tip to assemble and decorate your house. You will need food colouring if using marzipan. Some ideas for decorating include: straight pretzels for a fence; chocolate discs for the roof; chocolate wafer rectangular cookies for chimney, shutters and door step; marzipan for door wreath and trees; dried cranberries for decorating the wreath; small coloured candies for lights; broken pieces of gingerbread for a stone path.

Royal Icing

1. Make icing just before the assembly of the gingerbread house.

2. Beat egg whites until light and frothy. Add the icing sugar and beat until incorporated. Add the glycerine and lemon juice while continuing to beat until smooth and icing is stiff. Cover the surface with plastic wrap to avoid it drying out. Assemble your gingerbread house according to your pattern using the Royal Icing as the glue.

See more: Bake, Christmas, Dessert, Eggs/Dairy

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