A Christmas tree is only so big, which
not everyone can decorate it at the same time.
And there's only so much room at the buffet table, so
that leaves a few people looking for something fun to do.
Here's a solution--
They can build and decorate this easy gingerbread house.
And, just like our own homes, this one can be decorated
and landscaped according to our personal tastes.
Yes, I do mean tastes!
Submitted by: Sugie
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 tespoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup vegetable shortening
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup molasses
Using cardboard or waxed paper, cut 1 pattern for
each piece shown below. Preheat the oven to 350
degrees. In a large bowl, combine the flour,
cinnamon, ginger, cloves, baking soda, and salt;
mix well and set aside. In another large bowl,
beat the shortening and sugar until creamy. Add
the molasses and eggs; beat until well combined.
Slowly stir in the flour mixture until a smooth
dough forms. Divide the dough into three balls.
Place one ball of dough on the back of a cookie
sheet. Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll
out the dough to a 1/8-inch thickness. Using the
patterns, use a sharp knife to cut out two
front/back pieces; remove any excess dough from
around the pieces. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or
until lightly browned around the edges. Allow to
cool slightly, then remove to wire racks to cool
completely. Meanwhile, repeat with another dough
ball, cutting and baking two side pieces. Repeat
with the third dough ball, cutting and baking two
roof pieces. Form the scraps into a ball, roll
out, and cut and bake one base piece.
1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 egg whites or equivalent in egg white powder
(If raw egg whites are used, house should not be
a large bowl, beat the confectioners' sugar and
egg whites until smooth. Place in a pastry bag
with a small tip (or place in a resealable
plastic storage bag and cut a tiny piece off a
bottom corner of the bag).
Place the base flat side down in the center of a
large platter or piece of foil-wrapped cardboard.
Lay the sides and ends of the gingerbread house
flat side down around the base. Pipe icing all
around the edges of each piece. Carefully lift
and press the edges of the back piece and one
side together, sealing with the icing. Lift the
front piece and the remaining side and hold in
place until the house is secure; let stand for a
few minutes. Add additional icing to strengthen
the joints. Place one roof piece in place. Pipe
icing along the inside edge of that piece and
place the second roof piece in place. Pipe icing
along all the seams of the house for extra
support and allow to dry. Add frosted mini
shredded wheat "shingles" to the roof
and a graham cracker "chimney,"
"windows," and "doors,"
securing them with icing. Pipe icing
"icicles" all around the lower edges of
the roof. Decorate the house and yard with any of
the following, using the icing as the glue:
Gumdrops, hard candies, M&M's, marshmallows,
red-hot cinnamon candies, spearmint leaves (they
make great trees!), or anything else you dream
To submit your favorite recipes to be
included in the Garden of Friendship Recipe Book,
please email them to Barbiel
Background graphics made especially for the
Recipes Committee of the Garden of Friendship by Valatine