I really need to watch what I say.
As we were speeding around Michael's craft store last week, before this heat wave mind you, the kids spied a gingerbread haunted house kit. Of course they wanted it. 'Oh we don't need the kit, we can just make that at home' I told them. Kid's are like elephants, they never forget.
We have never made a haunted house before. They are only 3 and 5 and I definitely don't want to scare them. I thought it over for a couple of days and was reminded daily about making the house. I figured we could just make a gingerbread house and decorate it in orange and black. Safe enough, right?
Well, maybe we could just make it a little wonky, I thought. I sketched out a basic shape and then just kind of made the shapes for the different sides. Notice the gaps...not perfectly measured out. We used royal icing as our glue and for decorating our house. I used the recipe from the Joy of Cooking cookbook. It's a basic egg white and powdered sugar mixture. Super easy.
Mix one egg white in a microwavable bowl with 2/3 cup powdered sugar.
Microwave for 30-60 sec until mixture reaches temp greater then 160 degrees on an instant read thermometer.
Beat on high while slowly adding 2/3 cup more of powdered sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form and mixture is cool.
A little lemon juice can be added prior to mixing for taste. This icing gets hard really quick which is perfect for constructing the house, but you need to keep whatever you are not using covered or else you will be bummed.
We couldn't make gingerbread without little gingerbread men...and women.
This is Ella's girl. She didn't want her glued with the icing to the board so she kept falling down and smashing her bow.
Julian wanted a hat on his man.
The kids had so much fun decorating and test tasting, but as soon as Andy walked in the door Julian said, "Daddy come look at our creepy house." I might have gotten a little carried away.