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Exploring Womanhood > Heart of the Home > Holidays & Seasons > Christmas

Gingerbread House Contest

Check out the winners of our first annual StorkNet Gingerbread House Contest! Congratulations to the winners:

Click on the names to see pictures of their houses:

Chris & Sheri
Tonya
Deborah
Meg
Amy

Below is the original info from our contest. We thought those of you who missed it might enjoy keeping the recipe and instructions for next holiday season. Gingerbread HouseConstruct a completely edible "gingerbread" house. The house can be elaborate or very simple. Our model, courtesy of Michelle Grassia, is a house that was constructed out of graham crackers.

Five winning designs will be chosen, and their pictures will be posted here. We are also so pleased to be able to give the winners a prize of Susan Branch's book, Christmas Memories! This beautiful keepsake book will be a place for you to record five years of Christmas memories, including places for photos, special mementoes and descriptions of what made each Christmas special. To find out more about this unique book, click here.

To help you out, here is a basic recipe for gingerbread, as well as royal icing, an excellent "glue" to hold your house together.

Gingerbread

Ingredients:

    1/2 c butter softened
    1/2 c packed brown sugar
    1/3 c molasses
    1/3 c water
    1 egg
    4 cups all purpose flour
    2 tsp baking soda
    1 tsp ground ginger
    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    1/2 tsp ground allspice
    1/2 tsp ground cloves

Directions:
  1. Beat butter and sugar until creamy in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk egg, water and molasses in a small bowl.
  3. Sift dry ingredients into a medium bowl.
  4. Beat egg mixture into butter mixture.
  5. Gradually add dry to wet stirring with a big spoon instead of the beater.
  6. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours or until firm (overnight works as well)
  7. Preheat oven to 350 and lightly grease cookie pans or put in parchment paper.
  8. Roll out dough to 1/8 " on a lightly floured surface and cut out.
  9. Bake in middle of oven until edges are slightly browned. I set my timer for 8 minutes and checked and then went another 1 or two minutes. Do a test batch to see how your oven does.
  10. Cool completely on wire racks and decorate with icing and sprinkles.
Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Royal Icing

1 lb confectioners sugar
3 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Beat for 7-10 minutes. Icing hardens quickly so keep covered with a damp cloth as you work.

Please note: Use pasteurized egg whites if you plan on eating the icing!

Royal Icing with Meringue (not as strong, but egg-white free):

6 tbsp warm water
3 tbsp meringue powder
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1 lb confectioners' sugar
Combine warm water, meringue powder. Beat until mixture resembles frothy egg whites. Add cream or tartar and confectioner's sugar until icing is light, fluffy and holds its shape (10-15 mins).

Enjoy and good luck!

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