Home‎ > ‎TFJ - Hospitality and Tourism‎ > ‎Recipes‎ > ‎

Gingerbread House

Context: Write a context that might lead someone to the following design brief.


Design Brief: To design and create a Gingerbread House.


Possible Solutions: List as many possible solutions as you can.


Design Constraints: The following are some constraints or limitations for this project:

  1. You will work individually or in pairs.
  2. The assignment will be due before the Christmas break.

Detail Design: The following are the steps to designing and making your Project:

  1. Ensure that the work area is clear of hazardous materials (i.e., oil, gas, rags, wood, plastic, etc.)
  2. Design and create a complete cardboard model that will later serve as your template for cutting the dough.
  3. To roll dough: Working with half of a batch at a time on a lightly floured work surface with lightly floured hands, knead dough until smooth (if you feel like the dough isn't working well, heat it in the microwave about 10 seconds to warm it, knead again and then roll it). Then on a greased and floured 17" x 14" cookie sheet, with lightly floured rolling pin roll dough to 3/16" or 1/8" thickness. (For easy rolling, place cookie sheet on a damp cloth to prevent it from slipping.)

  4. To cut and bake dough: Using a sharp knife and your cardboard templates, cut pieces from the rolled dough on your cookie sheet, leaving at least 1/2" inch between the pieces. Remove scraps and reserve for re rolling. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake until golden brown and very firm when lightly touched with your finger. Remove cookie sheet from oven and cool on wire rack 5 minutes. Carefully remove baked pieces from cookie sheet and place on wire rack to cool completely.

Note: If you need to do some trimming, do it while the cookie dough is warm out of the oven.

You may need to make several batches of dough to complete your project, but don't multiply and try to do it all at once...the process just doesn't work that way.

Melt the following three ingredients together in a pot on low:
    • 1 cup vegetable shortening
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1 cup dark molasses
    • Remove from heat and stir in
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon ginger
    • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Then stir in 4-4 1/2 cups of flour, 1 cup at a time. Split the dough into manageable balls, wrapping excess in plastic wrap. Roll out, cut pieces, bake at 375 for 6-12 minutes.

Royal Icing is a pure white icing that dries to a smooth, hard, matte finish. Besides its lovely finish, it also colors beautifully which makes it a favorite of professionals who use it not only for frosting cakes and cookies, but also for intricate piping of decorations (flowers, borders, and lettering). There are two ways to make royal icing. My preference is to use one made from a mixture of confectioners sugar (powdered or icing), lemon juice, and raw egg whites. However, because of the risk of salmonella when using raw egg whites, some may prefer the recipe I use with students using meringue powder. Meringue powder is a fine, white powder used to replace fresh egg whites and is made from dried egg whites, sugar, salt, vanillin and gum. You can purchase it on line, or in cake decorating stores.

Icing (i.e., the ‘glue’): In a large bowl combine 3 tbsp meringue powder, 4 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar, and 6 tbsp water. Beat 7 – 10 minutes with an electric mixer until icing forms peaks. A good test is when a knife blade drawn through the icing leaves a clean cut. Store in a tightly sealed container if you are not using it right away as the icing can dry out quickly.
  • 3 tbsp meringue powder
  • 4 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
  • 6 tbsp water 


Materials: list all of the materials you used for this recipe.


Commissioning: Were you successful in this project when you tried it out?


Evaluation: Did this project work as you expected it to?


Reflection: Did you enjoy this project? What were you most proud of? What would you do differently next time? Skills learned? How did the food look and taste? How would you change or improve the recipe? List any difficulties you had in preparing the recipe. How would you manage these difficulties next time? List any tips that could prove useful in the preparation of this recipe.