I absolutely love gingerbread houses! They can be so pretty, some really are pure art! And how much fun is it to decorate them with the kids!? They get totally excited when they even come near gingerbread houses! Icing! Sweets!! Yay!!
The only thing about them of course, is the amount of sugar that is involved. After all the hard work to make the house and decorate it, somebody needs to eat it all and than it just gets too much, even for Christmas. Or maybe, especially with Christmas actually, when we are overfeeding and indulging all over anyway.
In the past we have decorated cardboard houses with sweets instead. That was still super fun, but at least the walls didn’t need to be eaten. Last year the kids simply decorated cardboard nativity stables with crafty things, there were no sweets involved at all! They loved doing that just as much.
When I came across these lovely mini gingerbread houses that fit on a mug, I thought that was a great idea for us to do this year. It has all the fun, all the sweetness, but in small quantities. I think that is a fantastic way of doing it for the kids. They need to learn moderation when it comes to food.
Once your kids go to school and get a bit more independent, it becomes very difficult to avoid sugar in their diet altogether. You are just not always in charge. To be honest, I don’t even think that is really necessary anyway, but they do need to learn moderation. They need to learn to have lots of the good foods and little amounts of the not so healthy foods. In that perspective a with icing and sweets decorated gingerbread house definitely needs to be small!
I have no cake decoration experience nor skills as you can probably see from my rustic houses. Neither have I got the equipment that I think the experts must be using. I don’t intend to learn to get better at it either as there is too much sugar involved for my liking, but basic skills and equipment can make doo in this case I believe…
We’ll just take a little bit of those tiny cake decoration sprinkles and mini smarties or chocolate chips with us on Christmas eve and the kids can have a go at filling up the tiny empty spaces on the walls of these houses!
Download the template for mini gingerbread houses here:
Or copy from below on squared paper (squares here are 1/2 cm).
If you don’t like reading instructions, you can simply follow these pictures. If you like more detail please read the instructions below. Have fun and do enjoy the result! I am looking forward to hearing how these mini gingerbread houses turned out for you, please do let me know in the comments below!
Mini gingerbread houses
|Yield: 10 mini gingerbread houses|
Needs some patience and good fine motorskills
- For the gingerbread
- see Healthier Gingerbread Recipe
- 1 beaten egg
- For the royal icing
- white of 1/2 egg
- 120 grams of icing sugar
- Make the gingerbread pastry according to the instructions in the recipe.
- Leave the pastry in the fridge for a few days if possible.
- Download and print the template for the gingerbread houses. (Or copy on squared paper.)
- Cut out the shapes.
- Roll out the pastry until it is about 3 mm thick.
- Lay the cut out shapes on the rolled out pastry and use a knife to cut around the shapes.
- Cut out 2 of each shape per mini gingerbread house.
- Bring the pastry shapes on a with baking paper lined oven tray.
- Use a pastry brush to spread the beaten egg lightly over the pastry.
- Bake for 5 to 6 minutes on 180 degrees Celsius.
- For the royal icing, split the egg and beat the white until it stands in peaks and you can hold it upside down.
- Mix the sieved icing sugar with half of the egg white and bring it in a piping bag with fine tip.
- Use the icing to glue the houses together, starting by the 4 walls. Leave these to dry before adding the roof panels.
from More Than Just Carrots