Monday, 29 October 2012

Gingerbread House

With the Christmas period being talked about, the shops putting their decorations up and the in laws discussing when we are to visit over Christmas I can't help but think about what my Christmas bakes will be this year! My husband has already jumped in with a suggestion of a yule log (something I was hoping to make anyway), however having watched the British Bake Off Gingerbread construction competition I have decided I shall master the art of making gingerbread houses. Now I never start with the basics...a mistake perhaps! So this year I do plan to practice by making my own house as a gingerbread look alike. Once I have mastered this I plan to make my family home out of gingerbread for Christmas. My Mum and Dad are hosting a big Christmas gathering for us and our Aussie family who are coming over for the first time in many years. There will be about 14 of us tops and so it would be a perfect time to crack out a beautiful gingerbread version of where Christmas is to be hosted! Mum and Dad live a beautiful barn conversion in Derbyshire which I can imagine being "cutified" for the purpose of baking!

I have been thinking about what I shall use for each component. Making the structure I can't imagine being too hard. I will take photos of each sections and roughly work out the ratio of height to length for each section of the house. What concerns me is what to make the roof tiles of... cereal, chocolate buttons, homemade biscuits. What about the windows? I could crack up hard boiled sweets and melt these in the oven in my gingerbread "window frames" to make see through windows, or perhaps I should I just paint on some white icing? What shall I bind the gingerbread with, icing or caramel?

What I have come to realise about this baking ambition is that my gingerbread houses are going to require much planning especially if I want a professional looking house rather than one of the instant pack houses from the supermarket!

Over-the-Top Gingerbread Houses: First Family Holiday House
I love the detail of this house but do not expect mine to look anywhere near as good as this one!
gingerbread house
This is simple and sweet, if mine looked like this I would be pleased.
This is one of my favorites, It is so sweet and beautifully done.
Again, another detaild gorgeous house, but I feel it is missing snow! I like the detailing of the wooden paneling the best. My parents home is made of large blocks of sandstone which I would like to think I could replicate.
Again, another one which captured my imagination for the detailed textures. Beautiful.
Unusual Gingerbread House 2
This one was the first one which made me want to do this. If I could make mine look as sweet and tidy as this one I would be pleased.
Mini Gingerbread House Recipe
If all else fails I will do a simple design like this sweet little house. I like the ice cream cones being used for trees.