The Christmas spirit is here. As a matter of fact, Christmas is the most special time of year for me.
I take advantage of every opportunity I get to plan a weekend getaway in Northern Europe to wander around frozen streets full of lights and Christmas markets. I enjoy myself a good cup of hot chocolate and a cinnamon roll.
Because of my work-related travels, I don’t usually have a lot of time to make tutorials (actually, I normally spend all of my pre-flight time at the airport writing posts), but I like to froze my traveling by the end of year. That way, I can spend more time with my family and friends at home.
As I’ve had more free time during this past few weeks, I’ve decided to make an extensive tutorial in which to show my beloved Christmas spirit. It’s a carved gingerbread house cake decorated with fondant, full of tiny little details and snow. A cake that will transport us to these northern cities that I really love.
Required materials to make a fondant Gingerbread House
To elaborate the house
- 5 square cakes (15cm x 15cm x 5cm height)
- Cake filling of preference
- 3:1 ratio ganache
- 1 dummy (20cm x 20cm x 4cm)
- 1 square base (25cm x 25cm)
To decorate the house
- 800gr Teddy Bear fondant Renshaw Extra
- 450gr Teddy Bear fondant Renshaw Extra + Chestnut ProGel
- 500gr red fondant Renshaw Extra + Ruby ProGel
- 100gr white fondant Renshaw Extra + Holly Green ProGel
- 400gr white fondant Renshaw Extra
- 250gr Renshaw Royal Icing
- Rainbow Dust colours: Aubergine, Autumn Green, Black, Aged Gold
- Rainbow Dust Edible Glue
- Basic fondant tools
- Cerart spike brush
- Plastic piping bag with a nº 4 round tip
- Silicone brocade mould, silicone garland mould
- Some brushes
- Burgundy satin ribbon, 1cm
Step by step
1. Before starting with the house decorating, you need to do a cake block, joining the cakes and filling them. I recommend you to make a template of the silhouette of the house. In fact, the shape you need is nothing but a wide arrow. Draw it on a paper and put it on the cake so that you can cut it with the right shape. To make the overhanging roof, use the remains of the cake we just cut. Carefully cover the cake with ganache.
2. Once your house is ready to decorate, cover all the walls with caramel fondant. Brown Renshaw Extra fondant is perfect for this design, not only for the colour, but also for the taste: it’s done with speculoos cookies, which reminds me of ginger.
3. After covering the whole cake, paint the same caramel fondant with Chestnut ProGel. Add some CMC to it in order to get the texture required for making all the wood decorations. Add some texture with a spike brush. Stretch the fondant until it’s 1cm thick and cut strips 1.5cm wide. Let it rest for 30 minutes, as it needs to harden for the decorations to be straight and precise.
4. Cut one of the edges in an angle so that they match on the upper point. To stick the beams, use a bit of edible glue and brush several times to melt the sugar. Make sure all the pieces are straight. Use a smoother to do so.
5. To make the roof, use red fondant coloured with ProGel Ruby and add a sufficient amount of CMC to it. That way, the fondant will gain consistency. Use a strip cutter to speed up the process. Cut some strips 1.5 thick and make pieces of different lengths to get an irregular effect. Add some edible glue on the roof and stick the tiles we just made at different heights, as you can see on the picture.
6. Cut another strip of brown fondant. Make it of the same width as the previous ones. Put some wires or toothpicks in a row and brush some edible glue on them. Put the strip on a fondant smoother to make sure you place it straight.
7. Add more wood details to make the design more attractive. You can add fondant squares under the beams and glue two strips diagonally to divide the upper part of the house.
8. In order to make the door, you should first do a step (make it with the Teddy Bear fondant) and place it in the center of the house. Next, stretch a bit of Ruby fondant until it’s 2mm thick and cut a rectangle of 5.5cm x 8.5cm and a semicircle of 5.5cm diameter. Glue them to the center of the house, matching the step. Then, make some smaller rectangles and glue them to the door to add more details. Finally, cut a strip 1cm wide and stick it around the door.
9. Make two columns of white fondant mixed with CMC and stick them to both sides of the door, leaning them on the stairs. Stretch a bit of white fondant until it’s 2mm thick. Cut two rectangles of 2.5cm x 9cm and glue them to the sides of the columns. Put a cross of ruby fondant on both of them.
10. Next, stretch a bit of ruby fondant mixed with CMC and make it 0.5cm thick. Cut 4 strips of 1cm x 10cm (width, lenght) and 4 more strips of 1cm x 2.5cm (width, length). Stick the strips to the sides of the windows to make the frames. Finally, put a thinner strip above it. Cut small squares and glue them to the door frame. Make a strip of 2mm x 1cm (thickness x width) and stick it above the squares. Make the final details of the door with white fondant.
11. Cut a circle of ruby fondant (5cm diameter) and stick another circle of white fondant (4.5cm diameter) on it. Make a cross with ruby fondant as well. Glue the window to the upper part of the house, right on the center.
12. Use a silicone garland mould to make some details. Fill the mould with green fondant with CMC. Make garlands of different sizes.
13. Decorate the house with garlands and other decorations. I’ve added a few garlands on the upper beam and around the windows. You can paint some decorations with gold food colouring to give the design a look of natural warmth.
14. Once you’ve finished the main details of the house, it’s time to cover the dummy and the base and stick the 3 pieces together. That way, the house will be uplifted and you’ll be able to make railings and more stairs. Make sure the stairs are centered.
15. To make the railing, you must cut strips of brown fondant (1cm thick) mixed with CMC, previously texturized. After cutting them, let them dry. Glue them to the dummy and, afterwards, put the upper strips.
16. To create the lateral windows, follow the same process we followed with the front ones. The windows must measure 5cm x 7cm x 2mm. Make 4 equal windows, 2 per side.
17. Make the frames of the windows. Glue a strip on the upper part to join both windows.
18. Again, use the brocade and garland moulds to make some details for the windows. I recommend you to follow the same criteria you followed for the main façade. That will give your design some coherence.
19. At this point, I invite you to put your imagination into play: you can create all the details you want. I myself have added handrails and some decorations on the roof. I also used this tin soldier mould by Katy Sue.
20. Glue the tin soldiers to each side of the railing. They’re guarding your front door! Paint them with a mixture of gold food colouring and vodka.
21. Use Royal Icing to add a touch of wintertime. Put it on the corners of the windows, on the roof, on the floor and on the railing. Use a small brush to add texture to the little details.
And after this really, really long step-by-step tutorial, I just wanted to tell you that I hope it inspires you to elaborate your own gingerbread houses. I hope you enjoy yourselves as much as I did during the creation process.
I expect to see your own gingerbread houses soon!!