I wanted to take a quick moment out of my family’s “gingerbread village project” to post the recipes for our “utility” gingerbread and royal icing.

Utility Gingerbread:

This is the recipe I use for ornamental gingerbread.  It’s sturdy, it smells nice, and it’s inexpensive to make.  It’s not the best tasting gingerbread, but it’s great to build with.

This recipe makes enough dough for one large gingerbread house, or two small ones.

*recently revised*

1 cup crisco

1 cup sugar

4 eggs

1 cup dark brown corn syrup

7 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon cloves

1 teaspoon cinnamon

4 teaspoons ground ginger

1/4 – 1/2 cup water

Combine Crisco, sugar, eggs and dark corn syrup.  Mix well with heavy-duty mixer (or a spoon and a lot of elbow grease).  In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cloves, cinnamon and ginger.  Pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and mix well.  Add enough water (1/4 – 1/2 cup) to make your dough the consistency of clay.

Be sure to line your baking sheets with parchment paper.  Baking temperature is 350 degrees f.  Baking time varies depending on the size of the dough cut-out.

Royal icing is what I use as the “glue” for my gingerbread constructions.   It dries very quickly, so be sure to keep it covered or in a plastic bag (as shown).

Royal Icing:

2 cups powdered sugar

4 tsp merengue powder

5-8 teaspoons water

Combine all in mixer or food processor.  Complete, detailed instructions and demonstration are in the video below, including my tips on designing structures, assembling them, and more.  Happy building!