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Gingerbread Beach Huts

I’ve built quite a few gingerbread houses over the years – my very first one was a gift sent by my cousins. It came in a beautiful big box with all the pieces already baked, little plastic containers filled with icing and all sorts of sweets and sprinkles for decorating. My brother, sisters and I spent an entire day engrossed in building the (what felt like) gigantic edible house. Now that I think about it, it was probably more of a gift to my mother, who must’ve relished an entire day without 4 holiday-bored kids annoying her! By reliving and building this childhood memory over the years, I’ve learnt two tricks to making a gingerbread house:

 

  1. Always cut your gingerbread pieces out AFTER baking. The raw pastry cutouts simply stretch or spread in the oven leaving you with a wonky house. Not ideal.
  2. Stick the house together using caramel – not royal icing. Caramel hardens quickly giving the perfect structure. You can then pipe on royal icing afterwards if you’re going to keep the house for a few days.
Gingerbread houses are one of the European traditions we’ve somehow inherited and while it’s fun to dust them in icing sugar and pipe on icicles hanging from the windows, it just doesn’t make