gingerbread village

  • 125g unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup (90g) brown sugar 
  • ⅔ cup (230g) golden syrup 
  • 2½ cups (375g) plain (all-purpose) flour, sifted 
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger 
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice 
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of (baking) soda, sifted 

icing

  • 2¾ cups (440g) pure icing (confectioner’s) sugar, sifted 
  • 2 eggwhites 
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar 
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

 

  1. Place the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 8–10 minutes, scraping down the side of the bowl, until pale and creamy. Add the golden syrup, flour, ginger, mixed spice and bicarbonate of soda and beat until the mixture just comes together to form a smooth dough. Divide the dough in half and roll out each piece between 2 sheets of non-stick baking paper to 4mm thick. Freeze for 15 minutes or until very firm. 
  2. Cut out the template (see below) as a guide and spray it lightly with cooking oil to prevent sticking to the gingerbread. Preheat oven to 160°C (325°F). Remove one sheet of dough from the freezer. Using a sharp knife and a ruler, cut out one long side of the village and refrigerate. Take the second sheet of dough from the freezer, repeat and refrigerate for 10 minutes. Gather the trimmings together, knead and roll out between two sheets of baking paper to 4mm thick. Freeze for 15 minutes. Place the two long sides of the village on a lightly greased baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 120°C (250°F) and bake for a further 10–15 minutes or until golden and firm. Allow to cool completely on the trays. 
  3. While the long sides are cooling, take the dough from the freezer and cut out the two short sides of the village, using the template as a guide. Refrigerate for 10 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to 160°C (325°F). Place the short sides sides of the village on a lightly greased baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 120°C (250°F) and bake for a further 10–15 minutes, or until golden and firm. 
  4. To make the icing place the sugar, eggwhites and cream of tartar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 4–5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add the lemon juice and beat for a further 2 minutes or until well combined. Place the icing in a piping bag fitted with a 2mm round nozzle. Pipe around the edges of the village and the windows to decorate. Allow to set for 2 minutes. Pipe along the two outside edges of the long sides and secure with the short sides. Allow to stand for 2 minutes or until set. Repeat with the opposite end of the village. Allow to set completely for 20 minutes. Place a string of small fairy lights inside, to decorate. Makes 1 village.

CLICK HERE FOR TEMPLATE

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Reader ratings (3.25) 321251
donna hay team

Hi Anna, this will last for 2-3 weeks providing it is kept out of the sunlight. You can then eat the gingerbread village however it will be harder than freshly baked ginger bread. A good tip is to bake and keep the off cuts in an airtight container to enjoy. Merry Christmas!

Anna Roberts@bigpond.com

How do you keep this fresh and how long will it keep (in Sydney!).

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