Grandma's Gingerbread House

Course : Cookies
Serves: 4 - 6
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Ingredients:

5 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cloves
1 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups molasses
2 large eggs -- beaten
---ROYAL ICING---
2 pounds powdered sugar
6 large egg whites
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
 

Preparation / Directions:

1. Thoroughly blend flour, soda, salt and spices. Melt shortening in large saucepan. Add sugar, molasses and eggs; mix well. Cool, then add four cups of the blended dry ingredients and mix well. Preheat oven to 350F. 2. Turn mixture onto lightly floured surface. Knead in remaining dry ingredients by hand. Add a little more flour, if necessary, to make a firm dough. 3. Roll out dough on flat cookie sheets. Lay gingerbread house patterns lightly on rolled-out dough and cut around edges with sharp knife. Pick up scraps around cut pieces. Continue rolling out dough and cutting out pieces on cookie sheets, making sure to keep walls, roof and small pieces on separate cookie sheets. Bake one cookie sheet at a time in preheated oven. Large pieces may bake as long as fourteen minutes, depending on thickness . For small pieces, rolled thinly, six or seven minutes may be enough. Check frequently to avoid over-browning. 4. Remove from cookie sheets and cool about 30 minutes on wire racks. Then cover a flat surface with paper toweling and place baked pieces on it to dry overnight before assembling house. 5. Assemble gingerbread house using Royal Icing: 2 lb powdered sugar, 6 egg whites, 1 tsp cream of tartar. This dough is delicious and rolls out smoothly. The baked dough is strong and rigid to support weight of candy and icing trims, and the house is very easy to put together. The icing will dry quickly and hold tight. Be sure to keep the icing covered with a damp cloth while not using. Here are the measurements of my gingerbread house pattern pieces: Side Walls (2): 7 5/8" x 4 7/8" House Front and Back (2): 7" x 4 7/8" high at sides, 8 3/8" high at center Roof (2): 8 3/4" x 6 1/8" Chimney (2): 2 1/8" x 2 7/8" high at sides, 1 7/8" high at center Chimney sides (2): 1 1/8" x 2 7/8" Door: 1 1/2" x 3 1/4" high at center (top is rounded)


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