Gingerbread House - Help?

Posted on 12/07/2012 by tinytracy
I was just wondering if anyone has a recipe for gingerbread cookie that is strong enough to make a gingerbread house from? All the recipes I use for gingerbread men definitely wont be strong enough for the job and the quantity wont be enough either. I know I can double the recipe but sometimes doing that doesn't work out very well so i'd prefer just a straight up, tried and true recipe! Thank you :)
magedragonfire 7th-Dec-2012 05:47 am (UTC)
Soooo I definitely have a gingerbread dough recipe that's strong enough for a house, but unfortunately I only have weights for it, not volume measurements.

(I might just have to post about what I made out of it last month!)

200 g golden/light brown sugar
275 g granulated sugar
9 g salt
6 g baking soda
535 g cake flour*
160 g bread flour*
160 g butter, soft
5 g ground cinnamon
6 g ground ginger

15 g cold water
60 g honey
25 g molasses
150 g eggs (3 whole large)

*(Using just straight all-purpose flour will probably work okay, too, but you're really looking for about a 9% protein content all told.)

Place first nine ingredients in a mixing bowl and blend on low speed until well-incorporated. Dissolve honey and molasses in water, and add with eggs to the mixer. Continue mixing on low speed for about 5 minutes. Refrigerate dough for 24 hours. Roll out dough to about 1/4" thickness, pre-cut pieces if desired, and bake at 190C/375F until golden brown.

Make sure to cut out your pieces while the dough is still warm; it'll firm up quite hard as it cools. If you need to, you can soften it up by tossing it in the oven again for a few minutes.

Edited at 2012-12-07 05:48 am (UTC)
alicephilippa 7th-Dec-2012 11:26 am (UTC)
The gingerbread spicing I use is a little more complex, and I usually make a batch up:

2 parts ground ginger
2 parts ground cinnamon
1 part ground allspice
1 part ground cloves
1 part ground nutmeg

magedragonfire 7th-Dec-2012 06:26 pm (UTC)
Oh, if you're going to eat the house, it's probably best to jazz that up a little! The recipe above is usually for showpieces that hang around for a couple of months and don't get eaten, so the spices are really only there for scent.
wildmagelet 7th-Dec-2012 05:48 am (UTC)
I've always used my mum's recipe for gingerbread biscuits, which come out crunchy and hard enough for shapes and gingerbread houses. And taste really good. :)

Gingerbread Biscuits

225 grams white flour
175 grams fine brown sugar
100 grams butter
1 tsp ground ginger
1 beaten egg

Rub the butter into the flour and ginger. Add the sugar. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the egg, mixing well. Knead the mixture. Roll out, cut shapes and bake in an oven on medium heat until lightly golden.
wildmagelet 7th-Dec-2012 05:48 am (UTC)
I usually times the recipe by four.
wildmagelet 7th-Dec-2012 05:50 am (UTC)
And here's a post with some photos of shape biscuits made with the recipe back in 2008, if you want to see what they bake like. :)
tinytracy 7th-Dec-2012 07:14 am (UTC)
Wow thanks guys! I dont mind that its in weights I have a scale and I can easily convert the sticky stuff into tablespoons :)
doubletake 7th-Dec-2012 06:30 pm (UTC)
I host a Christmas cookie party every year, and one of the activities has always been decorating gingerbread houses. I make small ones, only max 6-8" in any direction, but I'm pretty confident the recipe I use would work equally well with larger might have to adjust the bake times a little. I used to make a much cheaper (ingredients-wise) "gingerbread house dough" recipe but it was a nightmare to work with and didn't taste very good at all...I figure the cost of the extra butter and molasses is more than made up for with the taste and texture of these cookies--I use the scraps for cutouts and they're delicious--not to mention the ease of rolling out/cutting these babies.
I double or triple depending on # of guests, but make each batch separately as 6c of flour is about all my stand mixer can handle. A triple batch yields enough to make at least 10 small houses, plus 6-8 dozen cutouts...rerolling over and over makes the cookies tougher, though, so be efficient with your cutting. :)
archinatrix 9th-Dec-2012 04:13 pm (UTC)
Use coconut for fiber reinforcing of your gingerbread material. May not be true to the flavor/recipe, but it's edible and will help with the tensile strength. :)

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