ROLLING OUT AND COOKING YOUR GINGERBREAD
You’ll need a few things to do this.
1) A rolling pin (you can use a wine bottle but it’s not really a substitute). If you can get a rolling pin that revolves, all the better (here’s a fairly cheap example)
2) Baking Paper, sometimes called parchment paper or non-stick paper (this is NOT the same as grease proof paper)
3) 2 pieces of dowel or a pair of knitting needles that are between 0.5mm – 0.7mm in diameter (around 3/16 inch or size 3 UK knitting needle, size 10 ½ US knitting needle) This is not essential but does make things easier.
4) A baking tray
5) The template below or another template. It’s normally best to trace this onto cardboard or the lid of an icecream container but you can just use normal paper if you want to.
6) A sharp knife
- Take your dough from the fridge about 10 minutes before you start
- Line the baking tray with baking paper
- Preheat the oven to 170ºC (325º F) (or 150⁰C/ 300⁰F)
- Take your dough and roll it out between two pieces of baking paper. Using baking paper means you don’t need to dust the surface or your rolling pin and therefore won’t dry your dough out
- Roll the dough out until it is about 0.5mm thick. The best way to ensure that your dough is of even thickness is to roll it out between the two pieces of dowel or two knitting needles as pictured below. Make sure that the dowel is only as far apart as your rolling pin stretches.
- Cut the dough using your template
- Place baking tray in the fridge for 10 minutes
- Place baking tray in the oven for 10-20 minutes – I’m vague on this detail as it seems to vary from piece to piece of the gingerbread house
- Gingerbread is cooked when it has taken on a golden colour
- The gingerbread will still be soft when you take it out of the oven, so this is the ideal time to cut out the doors and windows – be careful not to burn yourself though.
- Allow the gingerbread to cool on the tray for 10 minutes before moving to a wire cooling rack.
- Allow to cool completely then store in an airtight container.