One of our annual traditions is making a Gingerbread House at Christmas and decorating it. It is such a fun activity and we decided that doing it only once a year was not on and a poor use of our mould, so we decided that for the next year we are going to make a seasonal house and this is our haunted gingerbread house. We had so much fun making and decorating it.
One of the brilliant things about having kids if they give me the excuse to decorate seasonally. I love Halloween and decorating the house. Any excuse to get the decorations out is good in my book! When TSB asked me to talk about my dream house this week, I decided that at the moment, my dream house is actually a haunted gingerbread house and the beauty is that you do not need a mortgage for it.
Over the years we have perfected our gingerbread recipe and this one is not too gingery and perfect for kids, plus it is really forgiving and makes really great haunted gingerbread houses.
- 350g / 12oz plain flour
- 175g / 6oz light soft brown sugar
- 100g / 4oz butter
- 1 medium egg
- 4 tablespoons of golden syrup
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- ½ teaspoon of ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees c.
- Pop the butter and the dry ingredients in to a bowl and mix until it resembles a bread crumb consistency. I call this tickling the mixture to the boys and it really helps.
- Add the egg, vanilla extract and golden syrup and mix with your hands until it comes together in to a dough.
- Wrap in cling film and put in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Flour a top and rolling pin and roll out to a 5mm thickness before cutting out your required shape and placing on a baking tray.
- Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, then place on to a wire rack to cool.
- Decorate as required.
We use a gingerbread house mould (UK Link/US Link), but you could cut it with a cardboard template. Once your house is made and baked, then comes the fun of assembly. We use our failsafe gingerbread icing to make sure that it does not fall apart. I try to leave it overnight to set fully.
The the fun bit decorating. I sit on my hands for this bit and leave it to the boys to decorate. My job is buying the candies, chocolate and sweets to decorate it. This year we founds some fab decorations from M&S. The boys loved decorating it and can not wait until I let them eat it with their friends.
If your dream home is more bricks and mortar, rather than flour and sugar, then make sure you check out the TSB mortgage calculator to work out how much you can borrow and how much it will be each month.