Saturday, December 28, 2013

Holiday Construction - The secret is in the icing

After years of trials, errors, and tears, gingerbread house success was no longer an elusive holiday dream.  The summer of 1995, when other 13 year old kids were hanging out at the pool or the baseball field, I joyfully stayed inside baking cakes to bring to a Wilton decorating class at the local Jo~Ann Fabrics. Despite my certificate of completion, I've yet to create those perfect grocery store bakery roses but the 'Wilton Way' did introduce royal icing to my repertoire and forever changed my gingerbread house game. Whether it's homemade gingerbread cookies or the classic graham crackers, a batch of the royal icing 'super glue' will have those walls standing in no time.

Wilton's Royal Icing from 

Makes:About 3 cups of icing.
Step 1 Beat all ingredients until icing forms peaks (7-10 minutes at low speed with a heavy-duty mixer, 10-12 minutes at high speed with a hand-held mixer).
Step 2 NOTE: Keep all utensils completely grease-free for proper icing consistency.
* For stiffer icing, use 1 tablespoon less water.

**When using large countertop mixer or for stiffer icing, use 1 tablespoon less water.
Thinned Royal Icing: To thin for pouring, add 1 teaspoon water per cup of royal icing. Use grease-free spoon or spatula to stir slowly. Add 1/2 teaspoon water at a time until you reach proper consistency.

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