(this post contains affiliate links)
I love making gingerbread houses! Each year I try to learn a new technique, and this year I made my own Necco wafers using this tutorial and this decorating tip from Wilton to cut out two different sizes.
I had this plan to make multiple colors but quickly realized once I got going that it was best to just keep it simple for my first attempt. I did add a little more water that the recipe called for to give myself more leeway to work and was fine with the additional drying time.
I really like the famous White House Gingerbread Recipe but found it a bit too dry for a Nebraska winter climate. Plus, I really didn't need the rise the baking soda gave it so here is my slightly modified version (one batch will make three of these A-frames):
Rachel Loewens's Version of white house gingerbread
- 2 C granulated Sugar
- 1 C plus 2 T brown sugar
- 1 C solid shortening
- 3 T molasses
- 4 eggs
- 1 ½ t salt
- 3-4 T water
- 6 C flour
- 1 T ginger
- 1 T cinnamon
1. Cream together shortening and sugars in a large stand mixer. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until light and fluffy. Add the molasses, salt, water, ginger, and cinnamon. Add the flour, one cup at a time. Mix until just incorporated. The dough will become very stiff, and will fill the entire bowl so don't attempt to double this recipe!
2. Roll dough to a 1/14” thickness between two sheets of cling film. Use a rolling pin with adjustable rings on the end to ensure even thickness. Trace around stencils (my preferred pattern here) with dull side of a knife and gently move pieces to parchment-lined cookie sheet.
3. Bake at 375 degrees for between 12 and 15 minutes. For construction purposes, over-baked is better than under.
4. Remove pieces from oven trim the ends using a serrated knife or pizza cutter (and feed to any hovering family members). This will ensure significantly better assembly. Let the cookie pieces cool completely before assembly. I prefer to wait overnight to allow them to fully dry out. Do not stack the elements higher than three piece once when cool and not at all while warm.
I've got a pretty good at assembling the houses, but one area where I still have loads of room for improvement is my decorative icing work. I would love to find a really great YouTube channel to follow so if you know of one, please leave me a note in the comments.
Happy Christmas Baking!
Don't miss out on my New Year, New You promotion with Young Living Essential Oils. Click here to find out how you can encourage wellness and eliminate chemicals in your home and save $20. Now through January 15th!