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Daring Baker Challenge: Gingerbread Houses

The December 2009 Daring Bakers’ challenge was brought to you by Anna of Very Small Anna and Y of Lemonpi. They chose to challenge Daring Bakers’ everywhere to bake and assemble a gingerbread house from scratch. They chose recipes from Good Housekeeping and from The Great Scandinavian Baking Book as the challenge recipes.

I was so excited about this challenge! I wanted to make my own gingerbread house last year but never really found the time, so this was the perfect excuse to finally do it this year. I didn’t want to make a huge one though, so I made two medium-sized ones and hubby and I each decorated one. Because I made smaller ones, I had a TON of gingerbread dough left over – but that is for another post!

For the dough (I used the Good Housekeeping recipe):

For the icing:

In a large bowl, beat the brown sugar, cream, and molasses until smooth.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and ginger.

Stir the flour mixture into the cream mixture gradually until the dough is stiff, and then knead until smooth. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and flatten into disks. Wrap each disk with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. I ended up leaving mine in the refrigerator for almost 5 days before I used it, so it was rather tough…but a little kneading took care of that.

When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 300 degrees and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Roll out the dough to about 1/4″ thickness and cut the pieces according to your template. Store excess dough in the refrigerator.

Bake the pieces 1-2″ apart. Larger pieces will take more time than smaller ones, so be sure to bake those pieces longer. Bake 25-30 minutes or until the pieces are firm. Let cool completely before assembling the house.

To make the icing, beat all of the ingredients together except the powdered sugar until smooth; add the powdered sugar gradually. Spread on to the pieces to decorate and to stick them together. My frosting came out rather solid, as you can see below. This was fine for assembling the house, but when I needed to spread some of the icing on the roof for decorations, I needed to water it down a little. It still hardened up just fine, though!

Decorate as desired. I did the one on the left; hubby did the one on the right. So fun!

Posted by on December 27, 2009.

Tags: , ,

Categories: desserts & sweets

10 Responses

  1. VERY CUTE Gingerbread houses! My 10 YO and I made a couple this year too, from scratch. Check them out here: http://www.mswonka.com/2009/12/gingerbread-houses-from-scratch/

    by Laura Rucker on Dec 27, 2009 at 12:19 pm

  2. These are adorable, and i love all the vibrant candy colors! great job!

    by Sue on Dec 27, 2009 at 3:02 pm

  3. how cute! I love that they are made from scratch..probably much yummier than the pre-made one that my kids decorated!

    by shelly (cookies and cups) on Dec 27, 2009 at 4:15 pm

  4. Cute houses… I love all of the pretty candies you used on them!

    by Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction on Dec 27, 2009 at 6:12 pm

  5. Your houses are so cute and colorful! How fun that your hubby made one too!

    by Barbara Bakes on Dec 27, 2009 at 7:21 pm

  6. Aw…so cute! I love the little gummy teddies on the roof..so adorable! I wanna eat the gummies now..lol!

    by faithy on Dec 27, 2009 at 9:41 pm

  7. I wish I had a photo of the HUGE gingerbread house my hubby was commissioned to make one year. It was for a local historical society and was made as a model of this big gorgeous house that is now a museum. Hubby did the gingerbread, and a local caterer did all the decorations. It was amazing. It was probably about four feet square, but with turrets and porches, and all sorts of neat features. AND I got to eat the scrap gingerbread!

    by Small Town Runner Karen on Dec 28, 2009 at 1:11 pm

  8. These are sooo cute! They look like houses for Smurfs or beach chalets.

    by Sarah, Maison Cupcake on Dec 28, 2009 at 2:51 pm

  9. Your Ginger Bread houses are darling. Love the candies you choose for the two roofs. I so wish I would have made one this year. Darling!!

    by Cristie on Dec 30, 2009 at 3:33 pm

  10. I love, love, love your houses!!! They are so bright and happy looking! 🙂

    by bridget {bake at 350} on Dec 30, 2009 at 10:58 pm

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About Sugarcrafter

Hi there! I’m Tracy, and I live in upstate NY. My husband and I met in college and have been married since 2005. A Canning, baking, writing, photography, and even cleaning (yes, cleaning – it can be oddly relaxing), are all things that I enjoy. This blog brings all of those passions together – but […]more →