As you may know, I love throwing parties! Every January, we host a Gingerbread House Party for our younger niece and nephews. (The older ones come over for a Game Night and the Black Friday Shopping Adventure after Thanksgiving!) Anyway, back to Gingerbread Night . . . it is a fun evening of creativity, design, big mess and sugar overload. What could be more fun? The memories are worth the effort.
And Here is How You Can Host Your Own Gingerbread House Party:
* Make (or buy) the gingerbread houses. I spend the couple days prior to the party baking the houses. I have a fabulous Cast Iron Gingerbread House Mold. (If you can’t find one in the store, Amazon has a nice selection.)
The Gingerbread House Recipe
1 Box of Gingerbread Cake/Cookie Mix
2 Tablespoons Flour
1/4 Cup Water
2 Tablespoons Melted Butter
Spray the mold with non-stick baking spray and then wipe excess away. Mix all ingredients and press into the mold. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes. Cool at least 5 minutes before removing from the mold. Continue to cool on a wire rack. Be sure the gingerbread lies flat while it hardens. *One recipe will yield one house plus a little extra to eat.
* Prepare cardboard bases by wrapping them in tin foil.
* Set up your table and arrange the candy. I use a lazy susan to help the candy be more accessible or place duplicates on opposite ends of the table. I highly recommend a disposable plastic table cloth for easy cleanup!
3 Egg Whites (at room temperature)
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 lb. powdered sugar
Beat the ingredients together until it stands in peaks. Keep the bowl covered with a damp towel to keep the icing from drying. Add a little water or powdered sugar to get the right consistency. (I used two batches for five houses.)
* Make the Royal Icing and pre-assemble the four walls of the houses so that they can dry and stand up to the pressure of design. I let the kids “glue” the roof on and hold them in place.