Monday, December 10, 2012

Our Holiday Gingerbread House

Greetings Everyone!

We thought we would stray away from house updates during the holidays because we ourselves are taking a little break.  The holidays are busy enough without having to meet with contractors.

We anticipate that this past weekend was a busy "baking weekend" for many of you.  It was no different at our house.  One project that we tackled was the yearly gingerbread house.

The first time we made this gingerbread house was in 2008.  We got our inspiration from the Williams Sonoma Gingerbread House. 
The first step was to make a pattern out of cardboard, and then trace that pattern onto our homemade gingerbread.  We made enough for two houses and had some friends over to share in the fun.  From start to finish it took about six hours to make all of the gingerbread.  Now it is time to assemble!

Since there were no instructions we just had to go for it.  We used royal icing as the glue for the entire gingerbread house.
It was also handy to have a soup can or two on hand to help hold up the walls as they set.
Now that is starting to look like a house!  For the windows we used yellow construction paper.  Next time I think we will draw some window grids on the paper.

We used cereal for roof tiles.  This particular cereal was called "muffin tops" and was quite good!  They actually taste like little blueberry muffins.  We made some quick window shutters out of candy since our piping skills are not up to Martha Stewart standards.

The roof is starting to take shape. We are now about two hours into the assembly process.

Slowly we add the roof tiles one by one.  This is when we start to think that the house is too big.
The roof is done and its time for landscaping.  We made a few bushes for the front and back of the gingerbread house, as well as some potted plants.  

Now the house is ready for candy and icing.
We added icing in the roof valley to give the appearance of snow. We also added ice cycles to add some character, but mostly to hide our errors.  Like I said, we are amateurs.

Complete!  We added some final touches with the red front door and welcome mat.

Again, we won't win any prizes from Martha Stewart, but I think this gingerbread house came out pretty darn close to our inspirational photograph.
If going through the 12 hour process of baking and decorating your own gingerbread  house sounds like too much work, you can order one through the Williams Sonoma Catalog.
Wishing you success in all of your holiday baking!
Tonya and Rob


  1. i can smell the deliciousness through the screen, and i'm really hoping to find a few hours this month to bake and make these with my sister. we have fond memories of doing so in years past!

    smiles to you.


  2. awe! - i make a little village of houses with my Niece every year! - so much fun!!! xoxox

  3. Wow, I am impressed! Great job. What a fun new tradition....

  4. Very charming and lovingly homemade. I adore everything about it. Perhaps next year you can make a French inspired gingerbread house? :) Like a Normandy cottage with timber frame? Happy Holidays!

  5. So neat...but lots harder than it looks isn't it?

  6. It looks great and very impressed you made your own gingerbread.

    A few years ago I started making my own candy glass for the windows and it couldn't be simpler:

    1. Trace your windows on a piece of parchment parper - flip over
    2. Crush hard butterscotch candy's into small chips
    3. Fill in the shapes of the windows letting it overhang a bit
    4. Put in 350 degree over until melted.
    5. Let cool until stiff and you can pick them up

    If the crushed candy isn't even it could bubble, bu tthat's fine by me you can always pop the bubble while it's hot and put back in the oven.

    Once cool, ice into place from the back like you did the construction paper.

    Good luck next year!

  7. In my case there should be a disclaimer: Don't try this at home, Kids. I can never seem to make them stay together so I gave up trying. Too stressful for me! I will sit back and happily appreciate yours thank you very much!! xo

  8. Wow - beautiful! Definitely a labor of love, but 6 hours is nothing compared to the amount of time and effort you are putting into your real house!

    Hope you have a wonderful holiday season.

    - Holly

  9. So fun and I'm very impressed! Ours were pre made as it's too difficult to keep the walls up when hosting a gingerbread house party.. {my last post!}

    I like to display mine front row and center! They smell lovely don't they? :)

  10. I think the Gingerbread House looks great! They do take a lot of time and effort. How fun though!

    2012 Artists Series,

  11. charming!!
    what a beautiful and fun tradition. do you ever eat this? :-)

  12. Oh Wow! This ginger bread house looks like our home! AMAZING & so perfectly done! So glad That I've find your lovely blog! :)

  13. ARE YOU KIDDING? THIS IS FABULOUS! I tried making little ones with the kids and all the houses collapsed so I gave up. Bravo!!!

  14. This is gorgeous - mine usually come out lopsided and with the candy all falling off - now I have Dean and Deluca make mine - so much easier for this baking challenged one. Happy weekend!!


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