Despite my extremely limited baking skills, it seems as December approaches I invariably have the sudden desire to create those most complex of confections: a Gingerbread house.
Past experiences have not gone well, resulting in collapsed roofs, piles of crumbs, an entire bottle of Elmer's glue and a quickly scribbled sign "Do Not Eat!"
In an effort to scale down my culinary expectations, I thought I'd attempt an easier mini version of a Gingerbread house with all of the spicy flavor, snowy icing, sweet details and none of the heartbreak.
You'll Needgingerbread pound cake (bought or homemade)
white chocolate melts or almond bark
your choice of assorted candies, sprinkles and cake decorations
finely shredded coconut
freeze gingerbread until firm
using a sharp knife cut into house-like shapes
I first cut in blocks then carved off diagonal sections for roof
brush crumbs off and return to freezer.
Melt chocolate according to package directions, letting cool just slightly
Carefully dip roof of houses in white chocolate. Set houses on wax paper letting some drip off like icicles. Top with sprinkles if desired or candy accents. I put some melted chocolate in a plastic baggie, snipped off the tip and piped some details like doors and windows.
Since the houses are quite small I kept them relatively simple
I opted for a snowy white theme but use your favorite holiday colors
Let harden completely and display on a bed of snowy coconut or powdered sugar.
You can set them on a tiered stand
or create a little town on a long trayserve with a warm cup of tea
Of course wasting cake is frowned upon in our household, so you can layer the leftover gingerbread scraps into an impromptu trifle with ice cream or Greek yogurt!
Gingerbread Fun Facts
The first gingerbread recipe is believed to be one from Greece from the year 2400BC!
Henry the Vlll is thought to have eaten a ginger mixture in hopes of avoiding the plague!
Gingerbread houses appeared in Germany in the 16th century and were often decorated with gold leaf!
In 2006 the world's biggest Gingerbread house constructed in Texas required a building permit!
For these and more on the
fascinating history of Gingerbread visit
Sweet Holiday Season!