Last year was my first time to ever make a gingerbread house so this year I had a different approach to the project. To see last years click HERE. I went for more detail work and boy did it pay off! I was truly in love with my house and I really hated to hand it over to the winning bidder. The house ended up being a mansion, because once again I didn’t realize my templates where a little larger then expected. Last year my house weighed in at 12.8 pounds this year it was 27.8 pounds. Here’s some stats then I’ll share the recipes I used and the tips I came up with doing this year.
- 27.8 pounds
- 14 batches of gingerbread
- 5 batches of royal icing
- A full day of baking gingerbread
- 31 hours of decorating
And of course the reason I got involved with this is because of my baby Mocha…
Lucky Dog Rescue is such a great organization and we wouldn’t have our Mocha without them! Be sure to check out there site and if you’re looking to donate somewhere this year, this is group that could use your help.
First off I have to get my bragging over with haha! I was told by several chefs that I should shout it from the roof tops because being the only amateur person to make a gingerbread house for the event I beat out all of them with my 2nd place ribbon! Here’s a list of people I beat out in case you want to know – Mark’s American Cuisine, Brennan’s, Four Season’s Hotel, Bavarian Cakery, Canopy, The Barbed Rose Steakhouse and Seafood Co, Voice Restaurant and Lounge. First place went to pastry chef Rebecca Masson. (Don’t worry I have her in my sights for next year!)
And one more shout out before I move on to some recipes and pictures! A HUGE thank you to Steve Wiley author of Are You Gonna Eat That? who purchased my gingerbread house at the auction. His book is hilarious and I can’t wait to host a giveaway for him.
Now that I have that out of the way lets get to cooking…
- Gingerbread recipe can be found HERE
- Royal Icing recipe can be found HERE
- Sugar Glass windows recipe can be found HERE
I made bushes and topiaries by taking a marshmallow and piping on green icing using a star tip. I used the cardboard wine boxes as a stand while they dried. You could also use green floral foam or fill a bucket with sand.
You’ll want to bake all of your gingerbread and let them cool completely before starting your structure. I learned that humidity and gingerbread don’t mix so make sure you keep you ac on. If the humidity is up then your gingerbread will get soft and crumble or fall and there’s no fixing it besides re-baking the pieces.
I also saved the scraps from trimming the gingerbread while it was still warm. You never know where you can use these long strips. I made this log holder using them and tootsie rolls.
For the colored stained glass I baked the gingerbread for 10 minutes, removed it from the oven and added chopped up pieces of jolly ranchers, put it back in the oven and baked for the remaining 5 minutes. To make the window more reflective I glued with icing a piece of foil on the back. Work in stages, just because you get it done doesn’t mean you have to slap it on the house right away. Wait for the supports to dry then add another wall or the roof.
For the “wall paper” I used scrapbook paper and lined the back with foil before putting on the gingerbread wall. This is important otherwise the grease from the gingerbread will soak in your paper. Michaels and Hobby Lobby have edible papers, but I ran out of time to run over there. 95% of the house had to be edible so I was alright using this.
My roof was made out of dog bone treats. It is a dog house after all.
Gotta have lots of supports in a big house like this!
I tried to play with fondant more this year. I made a cute little snowman. I pressed sprinkles into the fondant for his hat and I used tweezers to push in his eyes and nose.
I made my puppy dog by watching a video on Youtube. He’s a little chunky, but I think he’s cute!
I even made a vegetable garden for the backyard. I piped down some icing as my rows then put some crushed gingerbread down for the dirt. Using candy and icing I made lettuce, carrots and radishes.
I also piped on vine work behind the garden and on the side of my house.
Other personal touches included a table with an adoption form in one of my bay windows.
The grass is made of coconut with green food coloring. Here’s a few more pictures from around the sides of the house.
On to my competition: The one with Snoopy got 3rd place (she made blown sugar glass for the light bulbs) and the last picture below got 1st.
Ad using my new Flip camera I even did a video of my house, hope you enjoy!!