Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, it is so much fun trying to figure out decorations and costumes and I always enjoy handing out candy to the neighborhood kids.
For the last couple of years, I've been watching the food network and they have several food competitions. One year I was inspired by a Halloween Gingerbread house competition.
I put a lot of thought into this Gingerbread house, I really wanted to try and make it look like a real building in the town I live in.
I noticed our Museum had an interesting architectural style and decided that it would be a perfect model.
This project was made over a 1 week period. It won't last more than a couple of weeks but before I throw it out I will have to disassemble it to remove the lights.
Step 1: Supplies
For this project you will need a few cardboard boxes, glue, Exacto knife, scissors, frosting, (recipe to follow) candy corn, Reeses candy, freezer paper, aluminum foil and wax paper. Also, clear Christmas lights or orange Halloween lights.
Step 2: Design
Take a picture of a house that you would like to re-create. Enlarge the photo and decide how big your gingerbread house is going to be.
My house is 14" wide x 10" deep x 17" tall.
Draw your design, or get a friend to help you.
Step 3: Foundation
Cover 3 or 4 layers of cardboard with freezer paper. (place a small amount of glue in between layers of cardboard) Or cut a piece of 1/2" plywood the size you need and cover with freezer paper.
Step 4: Cardboard Walls
Make the 4 walls first. Cut windows out with an Exacto knife. glue wax paper to the inside of the wall over each window.
I cut 4 more walls the same measurements and covered them with aluminum foil and glued these to the inside of the walls, so it would reflect the light better.
Attach the corners of the walls together with strips of paper and decoupage glue.
Step 5: Lights
You will need a string of orange Halloween mini lights or you could also use a string of clear Christmas lights.
Cut a notch in the back wall where it meets the floor so the cord can come out.
Step 6: Cardboard Roof
Our local Museum has a gable built into the roof with windows, I wanted to incorporate this interesting architectural detail into my gingerbread house.
It was time consuming but after a little trial and error, I got the look I was after.
Step 7: Graham Crackers
glue graham crackers all around the entire cardboard house. I used decoupage glue because that's what I had but I think Elmers glue would work also. I covered the back of the roof but not the back wall. I just cut a piece of posterboard and covered the back wall with that.
Step 8: Pretzel Porch
Use stick pretzels, place a small amount of frosting on the porch and attach them down on the floor to resemble wooden planks.
Step 9: Gingerbread
8 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 jar (12 oz) molasses
1 cup granulated sugar
1 stick margarine
Blend dry ingredients together, then in another bowl mix eggs, molasses, margarine and sugar.
Add molasses mixture to flour mixture and combine well.
On a floured surface roll out to 1/8" thick and cut dough into squares. Cut a larger piece for the door.
Cut several triangle pieces for the corners of roof and gable.
place onto cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Allow to cool.
Step 10: Frosting
4 egg whites
Whip the egg whites until stiff peaks form, add the powdered sugar a little at a time until well blended.
Place about 3 cups of frosting in a Ziploc freezer bag and cut off one of the bottom corners.
Place a damp kitchen towel over the bowl with the remaining frosting so it doesn't dry out.
This frosting dries really fast so work in small batches.
Step 11: Attach Gingerbread
Working with small sections, attach the gingerbread squares over the graham crackers using the frosting as glue.
Step 12: Candy
For a Halloween gingerbread house you will need candy corn, little pumpkins and/or Reeses pieces. Attach to house edges, around door and windows with frosting.