Festive Gingerbread House
For this recipe you will need a solid base that can support your gingerbread house and a long supporting rod to hold up the rice crispy balloon. Firmly attach the rod to the middle of the base and build both your house and balloon around it to achieve a floating effect.
- 160g Egg whites
- 4 cups Sifted icing sugar
- 2 tsp Lemon juice
- 250g Unsalted butter
- 200g Dark muscovado sugar
- 105ml Golden syrup
- 600g Golden Cloud Cake Flour
- 2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
- 4 tsp Ground ginger
- 180g unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
- 280g mini marshmallows
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 8.5 cups puffed rice cereal
- Jelly Tots, Smarties, sugared almonds or any other balloon-shaped sweets
- First, cook the eggs in a bain marie over low heat for 2-3 minutes, whisking constantly. This will kill any bacteria in the eggs, ensuring them safe to use when raw.
- With a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat egg whites until foamy.
- Gradually add sifted sugar spoonful by spoonful followed by the lemon juice.
- Beat at high speed until thickened.
- If the icing is too runny, add more icing sugar until you get the consistency you desire.
- Preheat your oven to 200°C.
- Melt the butter, sugar and syrup in a pan.
- Mix the flour, bicarbonate of soda and ground ginger into a large bowl, then stir in the butter mixture to make a stiff dough. add a tiny splash of water if the dough won’t come together.
- Put a sheet of baking paper on a work surface and roll out the dough to the thickness of around 1.5cm.
- Cut out one of the walls of your house, then slide the gingerbread, still on its baking paper, onto a baking sheet.
- Repeat with remaining dough, re-rolling the trimmings, until you have two side walls, a front and back wall and two roof panels.
- Any leftover dough can be cut into festive shapes or Christmas trees.
- Bake all the sections for 12 mins or until firm and just a little darker at the edges. Leave to cool for a few minutes to firm up, then trim around the templates again to give clean, sharp edges.
- Leave to cool completely.
- Use icing to glue the walls of your gingerbread house together. Pipe generous lines of icing along the wall edges, one by one, to join the walls together. Use a bowl to prop up the walls, from the inside, then allow to dry.
- Once dry, remove the bowl supports and fix the roof panels on, leaving a gap in the middle for the support rod.
- Decorate your house as desired
Rice Crispy Balloon
- Line a large bowl with parchment paper and lightly grease with softened butter.
- In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat.
- The butter will begin to brown, bubble and foam, take the pan off the heat.
- Add the marshmallows, vanilla, and salt.
- Place the pot back over medium heat and stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until the marshmallows are completely melted.
- Remove the pan from the heat and add the cereal. Stir until evenly combined.
- Using damp fingers, press the mixture gently around the top and sides of the supporting rod to achieve a balloon shape. Let cool at room temperature for at least an hour before adding icing and your decorative elements.