Anyone Interested In Doing A Gingerbread House Thread

Decorating By thefrostedcakencookie Updated 19 Nov 2014 , 9:27am by MBalaska

krazykat_14 Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 1:30am
post #61 of 492

I am so excited I have no life and decided to hang around on CC on a Saturday night! I've already started my plans for this year's gingerbread "house" and everyone I work with thinks I'm nuts- but then again, they're cake muggles, they just don't get it. I'm in the process of planning out how to do our county courthouse in gingerbread. I think I may have gotten in over my head on this one, but it's going to be SO cool when it's done! I took some pics and am going to start working on the templates...

I made a haunted house version of my house last year- http://www.cakecentral.com/cake-photo_1152553.html http://www.cakecentral.com/cake-photo_1151886.html - I used sugar cookies since gingerbread didn't seem haunty enough. I had super fun, learned lots and it was REALLY tastey.

TO MAKE A TEMPLATE: One of the few good things about living in this area is that our county/township assessors have a website so people can check the assessments of their homes- they also have sketches of the houses- with dimensions. I used that as a footprint to start with- I'm pretty sure I used a 1 foot=1 inch scale, maybe 4 feet= 1 inch, ok so I just used what would fit well on the cake board I wanted to use. So then I went to MSWord, and made a sketch (inserted a square and told it how big I wanted it to be...) There was a bit of math involved when it came to the rooves- but not too bad (just ask your standard 12 year old- they're all good at that stuff!) After I got it all drawn out, I cut out cardboard *use the corrogated stuff- it's about as thick as gingerbread and will help you when you realize your pattern isn't quite going to fit together the way you drew it. My first time, I used poster board and it was beautiful- until I baked the gingerbread and realized that things didn't fit as neatly as the card stock did!!! So you make the notes on the pattern pieces, then use those to cut out your gingerbread (reading the notes as you go) Also, don't forget to write yourself notes about simple things- it's amazing how easily you forget to cut out windows, flip roof pieces, etc!

Any questions on templates, PLEASE ask, I love the fact that I know how to do this stuff and might be able to help!!! icon_biggrin.gif


***edited to fix the links***

Honeydukes Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 5:37am
post #62 of 492

Hey, Kelly, welcome!

Love your site! Do you have a template for the little green house at the top of your banner?

Honeydukes Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 7:36am
post #63 of 492
Quote:
Originally Posted by nickshalfpint

Here is a cool link for a haunted house
http://www.haunteddimensions.raykeim.com/index506.html




That is a gorgeous house. Unfortunately, it's out of my league. I think I'll take a few decorating ideas from it. Like the black "wrought iron" fence / railing. Love that. I don't remember which picture, but one had a licorice stick tree. You split the licorice to make the branches.

Does it seem that the haunted GB houses have less candy on them than the Christmas ones? I'm seeing some mostly RI and a just few candy pieces.

DebraDough Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 7:55am
post #64 of 492

Oh my goodness. I've made literally hundreds of gingerbread houses. I was known as the gingerbread lady by one entire generation of school kids. They didn't know my name but they knew who I was. One year all of the kids in my daughters fourth grade class used graph paper and designed their own buildings. Yep..they sent them home to me and I baked hundreds of parts and pieces. We has a saloon, courthouse, church, train station (and a train that ran through the village) and more, more and more. Silly me...not one pidture. Acutally I was just too dog tired by the time they all got them assembled and decorated. That was when my 28 year old daughter was in the fourth grade. My how time flys. I can't wait to see what all of you ladies add to one of my favorite topics. I haven't made one for about four years now..no kids anymore. Maybe grandkids one day!

pamconn Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 2:42pm
post #65 of 492

A question from someone how has only done a graham cracker house icon_redface.gif

When you "glue the pieces together-does the icing glue show on the outside?

Does anyone have some photos of a gingerbread house being put together? I am a visual learner and need to see something to really understand the directions.


Thanks for your help. I have always wanted to do one of these but have been intimidated by them.

justgale Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 3:04pm
post #66 of 492
Quote:
Originally Posted by k8memphis

Where is Franky's Attic webpage now? She is my gingerbread guru.
I assisted in making this millhouse gingerbread building




I just found this thread. I'm planning on making the milhouse for the Festival of Trees this year. Any tips or advice on how to do it would be greatly appericated.
Sherri

bobwonderbuns Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 3:04pm
post #67 of 492

I've always wanted to do a gingerbread house -- Lord knows I own every gingerbread book ever made! icon_rolleyes.gificon_lol.gif Thanks for posting this topic!! icon_biggrin.gif

l5pkel Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 5:26pm
post #68 of 492

Pamconn, here's a photo of the icing showing at the seams while building a house: http://www.gingerbread-house-heaven.com/gingerbread-house-construction.html. Usually the icing gets covered with candies and other decorations, but you can also dye the royal icing brown to blend in with the gingerbread for a more sparsely decorated or rustic-looking house.

Since you said you're a visual learner, there's also a link at the bottom of that page to another page with videos of people building gingerbread houses. I highly recommend watching at least the top one if you want to see the whole process before you try it.

Honeydukes, you wrote:

Quote:
Quote:

Love your site! Do you have a template for the little green house at the top of your banner?



No, I haven't made that template yet, but it will be very easy. I'll try to get that one done very soon as well. If only there were more hours in a day!

Kelly

Honeydukes Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 9:54pm
post #69 of 492

Should the cake board be covered in foil? I'm wondering if the RI will stick to the foil. How many inches larger than the house should the board be? I printed out my castle and I'm getting my gear together. icon_smile.gif

l5pkel Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 10:30pm
post #70 of 492

Yes, Honeydukes, cover the cake board with foil or something nonporous (Otherwise, most boards will take in the moisture and weaken.) RI sticks just fine to foil.

The board only needs to be an inch or so larger than the pattern (make sure you take into account the drawbridge laying flat) but you might want to give a little extra room for landscaping or other outside details (trees, shrubs, fence for most houses; Maybe an attacking army or a moat outside the castle.)

Good luck and have fun!

-K8memphis Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 11:19pm
post #71 of 492

Hey krazykat_14

Your gingerbread house is fabulous. I never thought to do my own home, great idea. But I am from NW Indiana, Dyer, Crown Point and Hammond to be exact and I love your house. It's so perfect. I love to drive through Indiana--I enjoy the fields and farmhouses immensely. What area are you from?

-K8memphis Posted 28 Sep 2008 , 11:22pm
post #72 of 492
Quote:
Originally Posted by justgale

Quote:
Originally Posted by k8memphis

Where is Franky's Attic webpage now? She is my gingerbread guru.
I assisted in making this millhouse gingerbread building



I just found this thread. I'm planning on making the milhouse for the Festival of Trees this year. Any tips or advice on how to do it would be greatly appericated.
Sherri




Use honey for most of the molasses so it does not yield to the humidity. Make several of the intricate parts so you have back up in case something breaks. I use a lemon zester to file my cookies to fit better. I overbake my stuff too. It just works for me.

It's a relatively easy design. No worries.

<high five>

Honeydukes Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 7:30am
post #73 of 492

Is there a reason you can't add the crushed candy halfway through baking? I watched the videos and they said to add it after baking the pieces. Most of them were overly brown on the corners which I don't think looks good. I might just melt the candy in blobs and glue it on the back.

l5pkel Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 12:47pm
post #74 of 492

Yes, I add the crushed candy for windows before the gingerbread is completely cooked so that it won't brown too much.

pamconn Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 12:58pm
post #75 of 492

l5pkel
Thank you so much for the terrific link! That helps so much!

krazykat_14 Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 1:08pm
post #76 of 492

k8memphis, I'm in LaPorte- I've been wanting to do my real house with victorian gingerbread accents but haven't gotten the time or money so I just did it in real gingerbread! I don't know if Lake county has an online thing where you can get the footprint of your house, I'll PM the link if I find it...

As far as melting the candy during the baking- I did that last time, it worked out really well- since I used a sugar cookie dough and overly brown would look bad.

On the board, I actually traced out the sketch of the footprint of my house, taped down the wires for the lights, then put down waxed paper. That way, the pencil marks didn't get on the cookies, and the wires for the lights don't get covered in icing and cookies. Royal Icing will stick to anything and everything- especially if you add a tablespoon or two of corn syrup while mixing your RI, it helps it stick better to the cookies, too.

thefrostedcakencookie Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 1:31pm
post #77 of 492

honeydukes- i've always put my candy in the windows right at the beginning of baking icon_surprised.gif . i've never had a problem, but i don't ever try to make clear windows, i go for the stained glass look.

p.s. don't look at the bottom of the oven icon_redface.gificon_lol.gif
LL

-K8memphis Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 1:31pm
post #78 of 492

The only thing is I live in Memphis Tennessee now--I grew up in Indiana.

Oh btw--And I don't think I've ever lived in a house cool enough
to be made into gingerbread icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

icon_biggrin.gif

thefrostedcakencookie Posted 29 Sep 2008 , 1:50pm
post #79 of 492

krazykat- love the haunted house, and thanks for the template instructions.

this year i need to figure out how to make a house where the front looks like a house but the back is open like a dollhouse. i think i'm going to have hubby stop at the store and get some foamcore so i can start on it icon_smile.gif.

Tellis12 Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 12:49am
post #81 of 492

Well, I'm in the midst of baking my first house! I'm having some problems with my dough being really soft when I roll it out, even after being the freezer. I'm making multiple parts though, so hopefully I won't have to make more after I'm all done baking.

I do have a couple of pieces that have sides that aren't quite straight. Will this be a big problem or can I fix it with icing?

-K8memphis Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 1:03am
post #82 of 492
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tellis12

Well, I'm in the midst of baking my first house! I'm having some problems with my dough being really soft when I roll it out, even after being the freezer. I'm making multiple parts though, so hopefully I won't have to make more after I'm all done baking.

I do have a couple of pieces that have sides that aren't quite straight. Will this be a big problem or can I fix it with icing?




You can trim the pieces while hot with direct pressure--for example press a knife or a bench scraper into the area that needs to be straightened--or file later or make it a whacky kinda house.

OhMyGanache Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 1:07am
post #83 of 492

Just so you all know, you've inspired me. Instead of waiting until the week before, I actually started my house last night. Yep. I designed the layout, created the template (I had to do MATH!! ACK!!!) and actually built out the template using foam core.

Now, I can't say what I'm building because you never know who's reading (hehe), but as soon as the competition/charity auction is over (Nov. 21), there will be step by step photos posted online.

As for last year's house, I have gotten several requests for the photos - but the file seems to be too overwhelming for my slow connection and it keeps timing out - so I'm going to be uploading them to a flikr account within the next day or two and I'll post the link as soon as they're up.

jenlg Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 1:30am
post #84 of 492

jewelsb78--that house is awesome. I'm not real creative when it somes to house..I'd be happy if mine is just 1/4 as nice as that one.

Tellis12 Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 1:50am
post #85 of 492

Well I figured since it's supposed to be a Haunted House, it'll probably be alright if it's a little whacky. It's going to take me all week though, maybe longer to get it finished. It's going to be an ongoing process.

pamconn Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 2:25am
post #86 of 492

jewelsb78
Thank you for the help. Your house looks great.

OhMyGanache Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 2:43am
post #87 of 492

Ok, someone sent me a PM asking for my gingerbread recipe and I read it on my blackberry, and then logged onto my laptop so I can send it to them but the PM had disappeared.

I'm just going to post it here and hopefully whoever it was will come back and know I wasn't ignoring them.

1 c. shortening
1 c. sugar
1 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 c. unsulphered molasses (light or dark)
1 t. ground ginger
1 t. cinnamon
5 c. flour
4 T. water

Mix first 7 ingredients on medium speed until well blended.
On low speed, add flour and water and mix until dough forms.

Bake at 350 for 10 to 15 minutes.

I always roll my dough out thick and bake a little longer... which makes for very strong walls!

Honeydukes Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 8:57am
post #88 of 492
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tellis12

... I do have a couple of pieces that have sides that aren't quite straight. Will this be a big problem or can I fix it with icing?




It was either in ones of the videos or I read it somewhere that you can use a zester to "sand" the GB.

bobwonderbuns Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 11:14pm
post #89 of 492

I'll just throw this question out there: I bought a gingerbread house a couple of years ago and it was all edible but she had "mortared" it together with royal icing. Well as time went on (not all that much time mind you), the royal icing began cracking and flaking and just plain disintegrating. When I use RI on cookies that hasn't happened but the house fell apart not long after I bought it. Is this normal? And if it is is there another "glue" to assemble the house with?

thefrostedcakencookie Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 11:29pm
post #90 of 492

I always use RI for the glue, and i've never had that happen. where did you have it at? was it near moisture or heat? that could have done it or it could have just been an off batch of RI. i've kept a house for a couple years and it was still standing strong.

another option if you don't plan on eating it, is use a glue gun. but make sure everyone knows it not edible icon_lol.gif

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