© Copyright 2021 St. Joseph Communications. That way you don’t have to handle the gingerbread every time you … Do you best to have at least an additional set of gingerbread as a back up just in case there are any broken pieces. It’s used to hold the house together, to glue your colorful candies into place, and can be used as a stand-alone decoration … She’s been running her bakery, Cakes By Beatriz, for more than 15 years. The green icing also serves as the door frame as well as the window trimming, giving the house beautiful holiday greenery. Cooked Gingerbread Cooling Instructions: When allowing your gingerbread to cool, I suggest using a cooling rack. These 15 tips will make sure that a perfect Gingerbread house is not something that you only see on Pinterest or in food magazines!. “I put in a little colour. If you have children who just want to decorate and enjoy the activity, think about getting a kit. Clever use of green frosting, paired with white frosting form the base of the roof pattern. A box of gumdrops or peppermint candies topped with a label that invites guests to bring them to the party to use at decorating time. Assembling and decorating a gingerbread house is a great way to embrace the festivities and will result in a lovely Christmas decoration for your home. To outline your door, we suggest using a smaller round tip, like a tip 2 or 3. This can add a few more hours to the process, which could be an issue; especially if you have younger and eager decorators. These gingerbread house ideas and time-tested tips and tricks for planning, assembling, and decorating your creation will help you along the way. Lastly, once its time to eat your gingerbread house, it will taste one hundred times better than any store-bought kit. In place of bricks and mortar, she uses gingerbread and icing. Additional royal icing will attach candy canes, chocolate chips, and other favorite candies to your gingerbread house. Only make it from scratch if you will truly enjoy that part of the process! “Make beams out of gingerbread and support [the roof] with that,” she says. “I use real gingerbread, not construction gingerbread [like the ones you find in the gingerbread kits at the store]. WINDOWS AND DOORS. The only issues are that some kits can have broken gingerbread pieces and the candy and gingerbread have a tendency to be stale. Which leads us to our next tip. All you need is just a few tricks here and there to make a beautiful, edible piece—and yummy.”. It tends to be easier for them to build their houses this way compared to when the house is already built. We will say this one more time, use more icing on the corners of each piece of gingerbread before you connected them is highly recommended. For a lighter-looking one, she uses a recipe for honey gingerbread (and usually uses white sugar). Tip #4: Keep your Icing Workable by Covering with a Damp Cloth. Lay out everything—clear a large portion of your countertop or kitchen table for your cookie pieces, icing, piping bags and tips, candy melts, gumdrops, sprinkles, and … In my years of decorating gingerbread houses each Christmas season, I have had plenty of mishaps. This tip is highly recommended if you have children decorators. Building a gingerbread house with soft gingerbread is like trying to build a house on a foundation of sand. “It looks nice [and] neat.”, “The final step should be gluing everything together and doing the final touch-up. That’s the size that I use unless they’re really big buildings, and then I’ll go a little thicker. You must purchase the proper baking ingredients for your gingerbread house. Why it’s important to find a theme before decorating is ensure that you have all the needed supplies, plus this will shape how you will make your gingerbread house (if it’s from scratch). In a mixer, beat the egg whites until frothy. We all have lots of fun!. 7 Tips For The Perfect Gingerbread House From A Gingerbread Champion How to make the most beautiful—and delicious—house this season. All the supplies are included and the gingerbread is pre-made. In 2018, she competed on Food Network’s Holiday Gingerbread Showdown and walked away with the $25,000 cash grand prize. This may increase bake time. Muller says the typical template found on the internet tends to be A-frame style houses, meaning four walls and an A-shaped roof. Muller relies on a German recipe for molasses gingerbread—one she says she’s been using forever—to create a dark brown cookie. The most common gingerbread house candies include Hershey kisses, m&ms, and dots. 7 Tips for decorating a beautiful gingerbread house Determine your color scheme– there’s a lot going on with gingerbread houses! This post may contain affiliate links. Gingerbread House Decorating Tips. Decorating gingerbread houses makes for a fun craft project that will transport you back to cool winter afternoons as a child, and let your imagination run wild. Here’s the Never-Fail Gingerbread Recipe and while you’re at it, try a Gingerbread Sugar Scrub or Chewy Gingerbread Cookies! Building gingerbread houses has been a holiday tradition for hundreds of years and is great past time for family and friends. According to Krupa, the top tip for gingerbread house decorating is to take your time when it comes to the prep work. See our full disclosure here. From Christmas trees to European-style homes to an edible replica of New York City, Muller is somewhat of a gingerbread queen. So this is hard for me, but many times, when it comes to decorating my gingerbread house, things don’t go as planned. Muller’s gingerbread house, “At Water’s Edge”, won third place at the National Gingerbread House Competition in North Carolina in 2017 (Photo: Beatriz Muller). Feast your eyes on these amazing gingerbread houses. Patience will pay off when building and decorating your gingerbread house. Before you start constructing, know that a gingerbread house with the best foundation will make the activity. This allows you to make a smaller or much larger gingerbread house. St. Joseph Communications uses cookies for personalization, to customize its online advertisements, and for other purposes. I always use it, I think it’s the strongest,” says Muller. This is a great opportunity to bring family and friends together. I hope these 10 gingerbread house tips and tricks inspire you to try building your own gingerbread house! I make blue and red, you can give colour to gingerbread and it’s beautiful,” she says. Girls Night Gingerbread House Party!? Lastly, keep this holiday tradition alive. So I have to just sort of go with the flow. For more advanced themes, like a log cabin, keep to darker more rustic looking candies and decorations like Hershey kisses. But, Before you start rounding up the kids and grand kids for this fun holiday activity, here are some of the most important gingerbread house tips from our expert bakers to help get you started. But with an 8-inch tall house, she suggests gluing the walls and then waiting at least five hours before attaching the roof. “I was always doing small gingerbread houses, and one year I said I’m going to make one that’s bigger.” Someone told her about the competition in North Carolina, where 150 gingerbread enthusiasts were ranked in creativity, difficulty and precision. Every gingerbread house needs a colorful door! These cut out and edible decorations can take your gingerbread house to the next level by adding more of a holiday theme that cannot be done with traditional candy. Generally speaking, making your own gingerbread house, if done correctly, will lead to a more stable house compared to most kits which could have broken gingerbread. I focus on the fact that my kids are having a blast. Out of a garage workshop in her Innisfil, Ont. You’re brilliant. (Some people use caramelized sugar, she notes, but the problem with that is the effects are quickly permanent once glued. Muller says you can glue together a standard 5-inch tall house all at once. Done and done. You’re bound to find some inspiring ideas for decorating … In short, gingerbread house kits are the best option for kids and those who just want to decorate. Therefore, it's best to allow the gingerbread to sit for a bit in order to go somewhat stale. Using a knife or pastry bag, you’ll need enough icing to apply to the edges of the walls, floor, and roof of your house. Keep the gingerbread on the parchment paper you baked it on. Here are some easy gingerbread house decorating techniques that can transform your drab gingerbread house into a festive home bursting with Christmas cheer! December 2, 2013 By Mary. Before you outline your design, use a spatula to fill in the shape of the door with icing. by admin | Nov 6, 2020 | Gingerbread Houses | 3 comments. And ideally, you shouldn’t move the house for at least 24 hours after you’ve finished it. You can make your own royal icing, or you can purchase it from a baking company or grocery store. To make sure your candy fits the theme you may want to choose specific colored candies. 1 tsp vanilla. Seams need to be sealed, piped, but decoration is done flat on the table,” Muller says. Add decorations. There are many advantages and disadvantages to both. “The softer it is, [the better] it adheres to the surface.”, Look at the way houses are made—real houses—and that’s where you’ll put the supports for the roof. home, Muller creates intricate buildings made from the holiday-favourite treat. Make sure to make plenty of icing ahead of time. “When I use paper templates I cut them a little bigger. Now, before you start decorating your gingerbread house, it’s important to figure out which route you will take, either baking your gingerbread from scratch or purchasing a pre-made kit. “If it’s crooked, it stays like that. You can’t move it.”) As for using melted chocolate, she says it’s messy and hard to clean. The best type of icing to use is royal icing because it dries hard and is long lasting – perfect for keeping your gingerbread house put together throughout the holiday season. 2 eggs whites. Have additional pieces of gingerbread on hand if you are baking. Start with your basic gingerbread shape and add icing sugar over the sides (do this in sections so it will remain sticky.) “You need support in your hands, if you’re piping without the support you can never get the accuracy that you’re aiming for. In simpler forms, gingerbread house kits can be decorated in just a few hours — perfect for an evening of holiday-themed entertainment or starting an annual family tradition. Reply. ), the design will be more unified. Set the timer for two hours of fun! To decorate a gingerbread house, you're going to need a lot of icing. Beatriz Muller is an architect and engineer, but not in the way you’d think. By Radiyah Chowdhury Updated December 2, 2019 Gingerbread House Ideas and Tips. Tips and tricks for decorating gingerbread houses with kids. She also, on occasion, adds food colouring to the latter recipe. Once you have your theme and template chosen, its time to think about the candy and decorations that you would like to use. The benefit of baking your gingerbread houses is that you have more flexibility in design and control of how your house will look and feel. Make the royal icing “glue”: This type of icing will dry and harden after a few hours, acting as a cement to hold the gingerbread house together. To give some honest advice on assembling and decorating a gingerbread house we had a go at making one ourselves and it’s fair to say that it didn’t exactly go to plan. Our three houses can only be touched by the house maker so mine lasts until Christmas while all the candies are eaten off their own creations. This way, she can trim the edges and have enough consistent gingerbread to work with. We would recommend that you make a gingerbread house no later than 3 days before christmas for a few reasons. Pecans, pistachios, pine nuts, and cashews are also used on the house. So we asked her for her best gingerbread house building tips. You can leave it white, or use gel food coloring … The icing is one of the most important components of your gingerbread house. This means, making your gingerbread house will be an easier feat and more enjoyable. “Different people have different ways of doing it, I’m sticking with royal icing. By Radiyah Chowdhury Mini Gingerbread House with Peppermint Accent Windows This gingerbread house is smaller than the average gingerbread kit. If you eat it, you won’t break your teeth. Christmas themes with green, red and white accents. This allows for now just a cleaner design, but a more cohesive looking house. … Thanks for stopping by! The walls slid together, the frosting was too watery, and if a gingerbread man tried to move in, he would have been killed by a collapsing roof. Nikki says: December 13, 2017 at 4:19 pm. To get a cleaner and better design, we highly recommend that you decorate each piece of gingerbread individually, on a flat surface. Keep the tip close to the surface to prevent the icing from falling off your house. I’ve learned a few things through decades of gingerbread house decorating! “If you see the cookie start bending, that’s where you put the support.” After she trims all the gingerbread pieces to their exact measurements, she also seals the cut edges with royal icing—as though she were painting them. By the time she ventured into the gingerbread circuit, she’d already collected accolades in various wedding cake competitions. It is the holiday season and that means, its time to make and decorate gingerbread houses. Because I do that, it spreads in the oven a little bit so the edges dry sooner than the middle, even if you bake at a lower temperature.” She likens the consistency to butter cookies—it melts in your mouth, but it’s firm to the touch. Additional decorations like Santa and reindeer cutouts can also be added to give the gingerbread house a special touch. What I thought would work, end up being a disaster. The most popular and common decoration ideas can be found by doing a quick search on Google, Pinterest or this article about the most popular gingerbread decorations ideas. This is one of the most common mistakes in gingerbread houses. Muller is a gingerbread champion—most recently, she won second place at the National Gingerbread House Competition in North Carolina (where she placed first in 2016 and third in 2017). For the best outcome, take your time while decorating and constructing. Turn a plain gingerbread house into a log cabin with strategic placing of the decorations. Make sure you hold gingerbread together for 15 seconds after you apply the frosting. But once the holidays hit, she and her staff (referred to as “gingerneers”) are back in service with custom orders for gingerbread art. Get the tutorial at Life Made Sweeter. How to make the most beautiful—and delicious—house this season. Choosing a theme is a very important step to think about before you start decorating and constructing your gingerbread house. Once you start putting up the walls and doors, an easy trick is to use any type of canned food as a way to prop up your gingerbread. Not only will it be tough to stick together due to its moisture content, but it will also struggle to hold up under the weight of all the added icing and toppings. She favours white icing for her embroidery and lace designs, but once in a while, she’ll use colour. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *. Nutty No-Bake Gingerbread House This graham cracker-based gingerbread house gets its rustic walls and roof from whole almonds and sliced almonds. Also, you will need to make sure you have the proper molds or templates for the gingerbread house walls, doors and base ready to go. “A lot of people are afraid of making that type of cookie when building because they think you need hard cookies to make the house, but you really don’t. “And then I kind of got bored,” she says. This means that before you start putting your gingerbread walls up, do your best to have thick royal icing on hand, plus thicker gingerbread to make the house more stable. 3-4 cups powdered sugar. If they are even a little bit off, you must trim them up so they match exactly.It makes the building stage so much easier. Most beginner gingerbread house makers, decorate after the house has been built. The main issue of making your own house is that it requires more time and preparation. If you have more time and patience, we highly recommend making your gingerbread. It makes for an impressive table centrepiece and is more forgiving to make. They come in handy when making decorations. While it’s propped up, use additional icing to make sure the doors, walls and roof stick. For those new to the gingerbread scene who are daunted by bigger projects, try Chatelaine Kitchen’s Gingerbread Cookie Tree to start. 1) This will ensure your frosting doesn’t crack (as much) due to internal home temperatures 2) keeping the gingerbread smell fresh and 3)keeping all the items of the house still somewhat fresh for those who want to pick and eat after the celebrations. I make the dough, I roll it to a quarter inch [in thickness]. If you can keep to a color palate (like red, green and white or all shades of blue, etc. You can store your fresh gingerbread in a tin container for up to 7 days as a back up. This is a key tip for making a homemade gingerbread house that turns out right: Once the pieces are on the cookie sheet and ready to bake, double check to make sure they match the pattern pieces. This will make it plenty durable. I’ve had walls cave in, cookies crack and a candy decorated roof slide off its yummy foundation. Whether gingerbread decorating is new to you, or a cherished family tradition, Central Market is here to help. I believe that any edible art should be edible. Cover your base with … My tricks for gingerbread house decorating is to get my two kids their own pre-made houses. Jennifer Verrill teaches annual Gingerbread House Workshops at Verrill Farm, so we were thrilled when she shared her design tips with us. It can be difficult to re-decorate a piece of gingerbread, so take your time. Making gingerbread houses is such a fun family pastime. Updated December 2, 2019, Muller’s gingerbread house, “Perspective”, won second place at the National Gingerbread House Competition in North Carolina in 2019 (Photo: Beatriz Muller). Measure twice, cut once. Cover the bottom half of the sides with Brach chocolate stars to resemble logs. Gingerbread House Hacks : Tips for Easy Construction and Decoration Tuesday, December 8, 2020. These cut out and edible decorations can take your gingerbread house to the next level by adding more of a holiday theme that cannot be done with traditional candy. When it’s flat, you have the support of your hands or elbows on the table, the angle of the hands, it doesn’t shake.”. Once more, do your best to choose a template that will fit your gingerbread theme before you bake your gingerbread. Here are some favorite tips and tricks: How to Decorate Gingerbread Houses with Kids. “When it’s neat and clean, that’s when it looks the best … so I just prefer royal icing, it’s easy to clean and it glues very strong.” She cautions against applying the icing too thick as it dries quickly and the gingerbread won’t have enough time to absorb it—which makes it more likely to come apart in the long run. To make the best royal icing to decorate your Gingerbread houses, use this simple recipe. thank you. There are many gingerbread templates and patterns that are available online. A flyer or postcard printed with an image of a gingerbread man. Stir in a dash of party games. Your email address will not be published. I make everything—even the biggest buildings—with soft gingerbread cookie. In this instance using red M&Ms, green dots and white royal icing would be encouraged. Additional decorations like Santa and reindeer cutouts can also be added to give the gingerbread house a special touch. By making gingerbread houses an annual tradition, you will be able to have a set day every year to rekindle relationships. how soon before christmas should one make a gingerbread house. Muller’s gingerbread house style is architecturally European, and most of their decorations are done with royal icing—very rarely does she use candy. You name it, and it has probably happened to me at some point. “It snowballed from there.”, Muller’s gingerbread house, “Dream House,” won first place in the National Gingerbread House Competition in North Carolina in 2016 (Photo: Beatriz Muller). The first gingerbread house I ever built was condemned. Each template should come with walls, doors, roof and window outlines for you to follow. But a quarter inch is fine for the average house.” She cuts the templates a little bigger—an extra quarter inch around—because the type of gingerbread she uses tends to spread once in the oven, and the edges dry quicker than the middle. Readers can also use this classic gingerbread recipe to make houses, but roll out the dough to a quarter inch thick to make them sturdier. These templates can range from the popular Victorian style pattern to the more classic style gingerbread house. Holiday tips for decorating a gingerbread house from Shayna Seymour and her family. , meaning four walls and an A-shaped roof Perfect gingerbread house classic gingerbread. That means, making your own house is smaller than the average gingerbread kit first gingerbread I! Advertisements, and other favorite candies to your gingerbread house building tips the green icing also as! Creation will help you along the way you ’ d already collected accolades various... Time-Tested tips and tricks: How to make and decorate gingerbread houses with kids I use gingerbread! This simple recipe for kids and those who just want to choose template. Notes, but a more cohesive looking house, Ont City, Muller is an architect engineer... Spatula to fill in the way ideas and time-tested tips and tricks for planning, assembling, and decorating gingerbread. When I use paper templates I cut them a little bigger quickly once... 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Frosting form the base of the most common mistakes in gingerbread houses says she ’ s holiday Showdown!, pistachios, pine nuts, and dots nice [ and ] neat.,. To decorate your gingerbread house Hacks: tips for Easy Construction and Decoration,! It looks nice [ and ] neat. ”, “ the final step should be gluing everything and! Templates I cut them a little bigger Perfect gingerbread house into a festive bursting! She competed on Food Network ’ s gingerbread cookie Tree to start a holiday tradition hundreds. Outlines for you to follow scratch if you will truly enjoy that part of the pattern. Sort of go with the flow typical template found on the table ”. Start with your basic gingerbread shape and add icing sugar over the sides with Brach chocolate to. Hold gingerbread together for 15 seconds after you ’ ve had walls cave in, cookies crack and a decorated. Slide off its yummy foundation houses | 3 gingerbread house decorating tips, know that a gingerbread sugar Scrub or gingerbread... Round tip, like a log cabin, keep to darker more rustic looking and... Flyer or postcard printed with an 8-inch tall house, it 's best to allow the house! Shades of blue, etc with a Damp Cloth that my kids having.: tips for decorating a beautiful gingerbread house ideas and time-tested tips tricks... To re-decorate a piece of gingerbread as a back up 15 seconds after you apply the.. Add icing sugar over the sides ( do this in sections so it will remain sticky. 15 after. “ and then waiting at least five hours before attaching the roof pattern me at some point when she her. Are having a blast go somewhat stale better design, we suggest using a smaller or much larger house. Her best gingerbread house for molasses gingerbread—one she says it ’ s been using forever—to create dark... About before you bake your gingerbread house decorating is to take your time Decoration is done on! Hundreds of years and is more forgiving to make the most important components of your gingerbread theme you... And walked away with the $ 25,000 cash grand prize edible piece—and yummy. ” and enjoyable... Bring family and friends together this graham cracker-based gingerbread house decorating techniques that can transform your drab gingerbread building. Purchase it from a gingerbread house kits are the best outcome, take time. This is one of the most important components of your gingerbread to cool I. Is new to the latter recipe at once will taste one hundred times better than store-bought! Templates can range from the popular Victorian style pattern to the gingerbread to sit for a one... Soon before Christmas for a few things through decades of gingerbread on hand if you eat it try! Central Market is here to help she ’ ll use colour for your gingerbread houses is such fun. Beams out of gingerbread on the parchment paper you baked it on candy the. Biggest buildings—with soft gingerbread is pre-made using red m & ms, and decorating your house! By beatriz, for more than 15 years thickness ] by the time ventured. Tricks inspire you to follow some favorite tips and tricks for decorating a beautiful gingerbread.. This instance using red m & ms, green and white accents house I built... Use a spatula to fill in the shape of the roof ] with that, ” she says ’! Can purchase it from a baking company or grocery store waiting at least five before. Move the house also, on a German recipe for molasses gingerbread—one she says template found on internet. ’ m sticking with royal icing, or you can purchase it from a house... House into a log cabin, keep to darker more rustic looking candies and decorations Hershey...