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Welcome to How To Cook That, I’m Ann Reardon and if you’re new around here it’s a tradition on this channel every year to make a gingerbread house at Christmas time πŸŽ„ I’m so excited. In this episode we are also going to take to the streets and ask people questions about gingerbread houses .

.. they look like houses but with gingerbreads in it. Yeah, we love a good gingerbread house! And some candy to eat 🍭 And we’ll ask them lots of other Christmasy questions and I might even be able to talk them into singing as a Christmas carol.

To get started with the dough we’re going to need glucose or corn syrup sugar butter molasses milk flour ginger cinnamon cloves and bicarb. Microwave that bowl until the butter is melted then add in the milk and all the other ingredients.

You can vary the amount of these spices up or down they make no difference to the actual dough you can leave them out altogether if you don’t like ginger and that sort of stuff … it’s your house flavor it how you like it.

Stir all of that together and you’ll notice once it’s all mixed in that this is quite a soft dough so you’re gonna need to cover it and refrigerate it for about 20 minutes that lets the butter in it go firm again and makes the dough easier to roll out.

One of the traditions of Christmas is gingerbread houses, where do you think that came from? I couldn’t even tell you mate … I’d say it probably didn’t start in Australia would have come over but I couldn’t tell you where it started.

I’m gonna say Russia. Holland. Ah Sweden. Do you know where gingerbread houses came from? Yeah. Where? Gingerbreads! I would have imagined they’d come from Germany or Sweden or somewhere like that maybe.

Yep that’s right they came from Germany and apparently they were popularized by the Hansel and Gretel fairytale which is quite a scary story and not very christmassy at all πŸ™ƒ Roll out your dough on some non-stick baking paper and use some flour to make sure it doesn’t stick to your rolling pin.

The template for this house and lots of others are available on the howtocookthat.net website as well and this one is a fairly simple one to make there’s more complicated ones if you’re up for a challenge.

Cut around the template and then make another line just a little bit out from it so you have a border. Take the template off and rub that extra flour off a bit and then slide it onto a baking tray. Now the reason we’re leaving the extra borders in place is it stops the corners from burning and it also stops the dough from spreading out and changing shape.

Don’t forget to cut your windows too if you want windows in your gingerbread house. Some templates say cut from thin gingerbread … for those roll it about this thick. In comparison for the walls I rolled it to about this thickness.

Now don’t bake your roof yet hold on for that but for everything else bake them in the oven for about 10 minutes then take them out and redo all the cuts, they tend to fuse together when they bake and at this stage you can take out those windows as well.

Then bake that for another 10 to 15 minutes depending on your oven you want it to be firm when it’s cooled if it’s not firm chuck it back in the oven for another five minutes. Now i want lollies πŸ‡¦πŸ‡Ί in the pathway at the front of the house but i don’t know how these will look once they’re cooked so I’m making three different pathways .

.. one with jelly beans, one with mini smarties in it and the other one plain just in case they both look horrible when they’re cooked. This house has a curved roof shape so I’m going to try and bake the roof on something curved to give it that shape.

Now i’m going to use a rolled tea towel underneath some cardboard and I’ve just got the tea towel under there so it doesn’t go flat under the weight of the gingerbread now if I put the wall next to it you can see that’s about the right shape.

I’ve baked this rooftop for 10 minutes and I’m gonna try and put it on but as you can see it’s splitting …this is the underside of the roof so it’s not the end of the world but I suggest you try putting it on straight away not giving it the 10 minutes in the oven first and just put it on as the uncooked dough and hopefully it doesn’t split quite so badly for you.

Check that it’s the right shape from the side and then put it back in the oven for about 20 minutes. While that’s baking let’s ask some more Christmas questions. Rudolph’s mum … yes … had three kids .

.. really? One was called Christmas eve, one was called Christmas Day and the other one was called? Boxing day. Boxing day. Rudolph? Correct! New Year’s Eve. Well, it’d be Rudolph wouldn’t it. Oh of course, stupid! So obvious.

Christmas eve, Christmas day and … whose mother is this? Rudolph’s mum. Yes, Rudolph’s mum! Did you get caught on that one? Now that this is baked I’m going to add some compound chocolate to fill in the crack to give it a little bit more strength, then whip up some royal icing and again the recipe for this is on my website and you want to keep whisking it until it’s really thick and holds its shape like this.

Now before we put this together I want to decorate the sides because some things are easier to do when it’s flat. So get a piece of paper and cover up the top so you have a nice straight line and then spread icing along to cover the gingerbread that you can see.

Then you just remove the paper and add some candy to the top edge and into the icing there and do the same for each side but remember on the front of the house you want to leave a gap for the door. Pipe a border around your windows and you can do all of this once the house is assembled but I just find it easier to do these when they’re flat on the counter.

Now use some compound chocolate to stick the chimney together see how this dough is much much thinner when it’s baked than the other one and it’s just easier for something like the chimney that’s not as chunky.

Okay now we’re ready to assemble … lay out your pieces so you know where you want the house to sit on your board and then add a line of compound chocolate and stand that wall up with the decoration on the outside of course and then if you use jars you’ll find the bottom of them will get stuck in the chocolate so what you want to use instead is a cup because then the handle can rest on the gingerbread but the base is away from the chocolate there.

Then add chocolate up the edges and along the base for each side of the house. Add chocolate along the ends and put the back of the house into place. Oh but if you want lights, which I do, don’t forget to put them in now before you put the back of the house on preferably otherwise you’re gonna have to take it off so the cord can go under that little gap at the back.

Now to give that extra support I want to add some royal icing to the joins because it’s pretty hot here, so I want it to set hard and keep it together even if it’s a really hot day on Christmas. Now we need to let that chocolate set before moving on to the next step so let me know your answer to this next question in the comments .

.. “if you could have anything on earth for Christmas what would it be? Oh money I would like money. Ooshies or marbles or well, anything. A new car. An American football jersey. Money in a free house.

I’d say I need some new shoes my ones are looking a bit rocky. Well at least he’s easy to please. Now for the windows … we could use gelatin sheets and they’re fairly see-through, I wanted a bit more opaque so I’m going to use rice paper instead just use some chocolate to put them into place.

Now pipe royal icing along the edges and then add the roof into place. Add the chimney on top, now because this roof is curved I really don’t want it to break so I’m going to add another layer of compound chocolate on this side it’ll probably be fine just how it is but I just want to be safe and it’s going to make it taste good anyway.

Now before I do any more decorations to this i want to leave it for those joins to set firm so I know we’re all safe so let’s do some more Christmas street talk … Tell us the story of the first Christmas? The first Christmas story.

Like ever invented? I don’t know was someone born? Mary? I don’t know. Is that when Jesus was born? Yeah no isn’t it when he died. It all started with uh um with Joseph I honestly forgot his name for a second there.

So I guess it was Mary and Joseph … she got pregnant through the Holy Spirit, Joseph got a bit upset about that because obviously they had not done the the deed yet and Mary was still a virgin, he was gonna leave but then an angel came to him and said relax buddy it’s God’s baby.

They had to do a census and so they hopped onto a donkey trotted on in and they ended up in the town of … Bethlehem, looking for a place to give birth. There was no room in any hotels or anything so they got told that the only place they could stay was a stable with the animals .

.. donkeys, chickens, sheep, cows. Well that was when Christ was born. Baby Jesus asleep on the hay. A star showed up in the sky … and there was like all the kings … the people followed the star to get to Bethlehem.

And then the three wise men or three kings coming over and presenting their presents … to the savior of the world Jesus and that’s the Christmas story. Is this something you learned in school because I must have missed it.

As you can see from street talk it is summer here in Australia for Christmas but gingerbread houses look better snowy I think so I’m going to add some more royal icing onto the roof and spread it out all the way to the edges and kind of just let some extra bulge off the edge there.

Make a neat line around the chimney and then make it snow just sort of dripping down off the top. Then add some jelly beans to match what we did on the walls. Neaten up the front and back edge of the roof just by piping more icing on and letting it kind of drip down and then add a line of jelly beans.

I’m mainly using white cream pinks and red for this house. If you choose like a color theme it will look more cohesive when it’s finished. Add some stripes of Christmas lollies down the sides then pipe a line of dots along the roof and add a few more jelly beans to the edge there.

The look of this house is actually inspired by a plastic model gingerbread house made by Kurt Adler, not sponsored I just like the look of it. Pipe some more dots along the ridge of the roof and then add the only fondant in this house the door .

.. if you rub a tiny bit of water on the back of your fondant it will make it stick add a swirly candy to the middle of the door and then some thick ones to the corner of the house. I don’t know why but I couldn’t find any large candy cones for sale this year so I had to make these candy sticks look a bit like candy cones they’ll do.

Now for the path the jelly beans were okay but they’re a bit melted so I prefer the mini smarties put that into place and I want snow on the ground despite never seeing a white Christmas πŸ˜₯ Oh let’s see what else people are saying in the Aussie heat .

.. Did Jesus get any gifts? Life! Life is a pretty big present! Yeah. What were the gifts? Don’t know. Isn’t it like an animal or something … no, sheep? No there was just cattle there I think. I couldn’t tell you that much.

I forgot the third one but frankincense, myrrh and another one. Three wishes maybe, three stars? Frankincense, myrrh and gold were his gifts … and do you know what myrrh is? No, I don’t. I have no idea what any of those things are except the gold.

So it’s like a resin that has a very strong smell when you burn it. They gave him perfume?! Well like a cologne, a manly perfume. A baby? They do seem like weird gifts for a baby don’t they, apart from the gold that would be valuable I guess.

These Curly Whirlies are great for fences, they’re chocolate-coated caramel so you can bend them. Pop them into the snow and then add a bit of a candy cane and a cool fruit on top. Now add the front porch into place and cover the roof with icing and add a few more of those matching lollies.

Now the roof is a bit big and plain so let’s add some wavy lines, now you can color and flavor your royal icing however you like. Then pipe a line of pinky-red above the green well this is almost orange but i was going for pinky-red and then a white line on top of that.

Let’s add some candy canes into the chimney and then sprinkle the whole thing with edible glitter, it’s really hard to see this on camera but it does make the whole house shimmer in the light… Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way, oh what fun it is to ride in a one-horse open sleigh.

Oh Crikey πŸ’•πŸ‡¦πŸ‡Ί I’ve just gone blank! And there it is my gingerbread house for 2020. You can check out some of my other gingerbread houses here with thanks to my patrons for your ongoing support and happy birthday to Xanthe I think that’s how you say your name.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and a blessed new year, make it a great week and I’ll see you on Friday πŸ’•

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