I just spent a fabulous Saturday helping 23 children decorate 23 mini gingerbread houses. Yes......that means I baked and assembled 23 gingerbread houses. Mad! We also decorated over 100 gingerbread cookies! It was certainly one mammoth baking week for me. Here's some pics of the assembly...
Here's some of the cookies and gingerbread houses ready to decorate:
Fondant and lolly bowls ready to be used:
Most of them completed (the kids were off having morning tea whilst I took this photo):
Some decorated houses and cookies:
All of the children did a fabulous job - well done. I wonder how many will last till Christmas day????
A few hints if you are attempting these yourself:
- I made my own templates out of cardboard first, assembled the house in cardboard to check it worked, then cut around these (if you can purchase cutters that would be a whole lot easier!)
- Use royal icing to stick your house together and attach the lollies
- Assemble the walls first, wait until the icing is hard, then do the roof (I waited a day in between)
- Prop the first wall up with something (I used a cup)
- Any lollies will do. If you have a large group like I did you can separate the lollies into bowls so everyone has the same. If they need more of something they can trade with someone else at the table (interestingly most kids had lots of lollies left that they didn't use).
- I also gave them little balls of green, red and white fondant to make extra things with.
- Put the royal icing in small zip lock bags, squeeze to a corner and snip off the corner. The children can use this to "glue" on their lollies.
- Add snow by using some runny icing (just mix icing mixture and water together) and sprinkle dessicated coconut on top
- Wrap with cellophane will make them keep for longer (and protect from flies and ants)
- An easy way to decorate cookies is to cover with white fondant and then draw on them using edible markers.
- Use pieces of cardboard covered in foil as boards. Get the children to decorate the board as well.