14 Dec2006


Everyone in our home seems to get involved in the gingerbread effort in some way or another. After all, rolling out several square feet of dough every year (or square meters in other years!) can be rather physically demanding! I made several recipes of dough this ginayear in three different colors for visual interest: a red dough with lots of red food coloring (the paste-y type, not watery bottled version) for the barn; a dark dough for walls and roofs and a lighter brown dough as well. All of the dough was resting in the fridge overnight as I cut out the patterns of the required gingerbread panels on parchment or baking paper… While this all sounds daunting, it is actually surprisingly easy to make gingerbread and if you just want a simple house, even a neophyte baker can do this. And your kids will simply remember it for years!

The key is to be organized. Have you patterns cut out ahead of time. Take the dough out of the fridge to thaw for a few minutes before rolling. Roll on baking paper gincso you can lift the entire panel/piece easily onto a pan. Don’t fret over imperfections, the icing will cover most minor disasters. Make sure you cook the dough enough so it is hard but not burned. Check your pieces against your styrofoam base to ensure you are well on your way. Keep re-rolling the extra dough to make additional shapes and doodads in gingerbread. I made additional cookies that I iced and featured earlier this month. So read on and enjoy as Marketman enters his annual lunatic-like Gingerbread trance…



  1. Maria Clara says:

    Collective efforts always equate to a pride and joy gingerbread house masterpiece. I am holding my breath on your next phase of your masterpiece.

    Dec 14, 2006 | 12:53 pm


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  3. nikka says:

    do you ever eat your gingerbread houses?

    Dec 14, 2006 | 2:25 pm

  4. joey says:

    How exciting! I would love to make those little cookies that you hang…that may be all I am capable of :) Then maybe a tiny house…your enthusiasm is catching and making me ambitious! :) Can’t wait to see the next post!

    Dec 14, 2006 | 4:38 pm

  5. tulip says:

    I have never tried and wouldnt have tried making gingerbread house here in Manila if not for you Marketman. I finally made my first gingerbread village here from a tweaked gingerbread recipe, I was actually worried that the dough might not form properly due to the weather but it did! My nieces liked it a lot and everybody at home took part doing it as well. I bet your gingerbread structure is spectacular. Thanks again!

    Dec 14, 2006 | 5:43 pm

  6. noemi says:

    the gingerbread men cookies and house has been our family tradition since I can remember too , since I was a kid. I also introduced it to my family .

    Dec 14, 2006 | 7:07 pm

  7. alicia says:

    I would like to tell you ho you have inspired and how many lives you have affected positively with your posts on gingerbread houses.
    This year I was determined to decorate a gingerbread house with my daughter. I could not bake it myself due to a very hectic schedule (definitely next year!). I had them baked by a friend, but unadorned. I had a grand time thinking of and collecting things to decorate them with. We had ten children over last weekend to decorate their individual houses and as you can imagine, they all had such a ball. From there, two friends ordered 20 more houses, each to do with their friend and families!

    I recounted the eventful Saturday afternoon activity to a teacher in my daughters school and two days later we had the entire year 2 (72 children!) decorating gingerbread homes that were the focal point of their Christmas activities and party this morning.

    Thank you so much for writing these posts! You have started new traditions by sharing yours!

    Dec 14, 2006 | 7:09 pm

  8. Candygirlmd says:

    Hey MM, how do you protect the finish product from insects and rodents?

    Dec 14, 2006 | 9:38 pm

  9. Marketman says:

    aridelros, thanks for the info. I buy only food grade color in paste form, I find they are more concentrated (and less watery) than the cheaper bottle format. You really need to put a lot in the gingerbread to even get a tinge of red. Candygirlmd, I find that the pure sugar and egg white icing seems to repel the rodents or ants…so I don’t do anything special other than keep it on a dedicated table. In ten years, I have never had rodent problems…possibly the ginger in the recipe also turns them off?! Maybe?! Alicia, thanks for those kind words. I know exactly where you are coming from, about 250 kids are doing their houses at the school that I help at as I put these posts up… will have to get a photo of those houses! Noemi, isn’t it amazing how it catches on? I always think last year would be the last house but we keep on doing them. tulip, good for you! Joey, if you have some time on your hands, a small house is very doable… nikka, the houses are completely edible. At the school where we do several large homes, the houses are donated to children’s wards at various hospitals across the city and they consume the houses in lightning speed, an amazing scene to watch! Maria Clara, somehow, all gingerbread houses look spectacular…

    Dec 14, 2006 | 10:17 pm


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