So, this year, I decided to finally do my first gingerbread house. The stores sell all sorts of kits, but I thought, "why pay for something when I can do it myself." This probably wasn't the best decision, since I have no experience in either cake decorating or gingerbread house construction. Even still, I had all these grandiose ideas of how cool I was going to make my little house, and how perfect it would be. This is the creation I envisioned...
...and this is the house I created.
You could call it a tragedy. You could call it an embarrassment. I call it 'the reason I'm buying a kit next year.' A lot of things went wrong, so here's the list.
1. I rolled out the dough into a jelly roll pan, so I couldn't tell how thick it was. I thought it was only 1/4th-inch thick, but clearly, it is over 1/2-inch thick--definitely more cake than cookie.
2. I wasn't too careful when I was cutting out the pieces, so many of them don't have straight lines, and the house isn't true as a result.
3. I didn't have enough powdered sugar for the royal icing. I thought I would just make less frosting, but as you can see, I ran out and couldn't even put half the candy on the house.
4. Related to number three above, the icing that I did make was too runny. I didn't have any more sugar to thicken it up, and I have no experience with icing of this variety. All the candy started dripping off the house, and I wasn't sure that the house would even hold together. Luckily, it is still standing--a sad testament to my poor attempt.
Hopefully, you'll learn from me and either buy a kit or skip it all together. :)