Thursday, December 24, 2009


It took a lot of patience & a couple of hours, but we finished it!! I can't tell you how many times I asked Miss 2 to go & wash her hands as she kept putting fingers in her mouth, but other than that it was a lovely experience. No begging to eat the lollies, no whining. It probably helped that they knew they could eat their little ones from yesterday as soon as we were done.

The recipe was brilliant, though it's gluten free it handled just like I remember real dough handling. It makes a very large amount, but that means you have plenty in case of mistakes or to make other gingerbread biscuits. It tastes delicious, too, not at all like many gluten free biscuits. It did soften overnight but perhaps I didn't cook the gingerbread long enough for solid walls & roof [This is the first time I've ever made a gingerbread house]. The ice-cream cone trees are doing a great job holding up the eaves that are starting to sag anyway.
The icing is royal icing, which sets really hard. You have to work fast before it sets, & keep any extra covered so it doesn't dry out & harden in the mixing bowl:
3 tablespoons dried egg white [you could also use dry pavlova egg mix]
4 cups icing sugar
approximately 1/3 cup warm water [add extra if required]

Beat all ingredients together with electric mixer until smooth & shiny. It should be the consistency of whipped cream. Thin with water if required.

I really recommend this activity to do with your children. Coming up with ways of using the lollies you give them is a great exercise in imagination. I piped the icing & let them decorate as they wanted. You can't see in the photo but this house has ducks in a pond out front & sharks in a pool out back!!

This afternoon they want to make some gingerbread people to place around the house, and perhaps some pets. But the plans keep getting even more elaborate: Miss 6 has plans for a stable complete with nativity characters & a church with steeple next year, while Miss 4 wants to create an entire gingerbread village!

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