100g unsalted butter, chopped
1/3 cup Lakanto Monkfruit Sweetener Golden raw sugar substitute or brown sugar
1 1/2 cups plain flour
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp bicarb soda
1 1/2 Tbsp Lakanto Golden Malt Flavoured Syrup or golden syrup
1 free-range egg yolk
1 1/3 cups Lakanto Monkfruit Sweetener Icing Powder or pure icing sugar, sifted
2-3 Tbsp milk or 1 free-range egg white
1 tsp cocoa
Red and green food colouring
1 TeeVee Snacks Original square shape, cut in half
200g chocolate-coated wafer biscuits
4 Woolworths Choccy Fingers
Green and red ready to roll icing
Edible sugar glue
Preheat oven to 160°C fan-forced (180°C conventional). In a large saucepan, combine butter and raw sugar substitute (if using brown sugar, melt butter on its own). Heat on low, stirring, for 2-3 minutes until sugar substitute has dissolved.
Meanwhile, sift flour, spices and bicarb together in a bowl.
Remove pan from heat. Add brown sugar (if using), golden malt flavoured syrup or golden syrup, and flour mixture. Stir until just combined, then stir in egg yolk.
Divide dough in half, wrap one half in plastic wrap and set aside. Place mould on a baking tray (this makes it easier to transfer to and from oven). Sprinkle remaining dough into mould, just roughly at first so you can divide mixture evenly. Then press in firmly and smooth tops with back of a spoon.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until biscuit edges are starting to darken. Cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, then invert biscuits onto rack. Wash and dry mould. Repeat Step 4 with reserved dough, then bake. Reserve both gingerbread koalas for decoration.
To make royal icing, sift icing powder or icing sugar into a bowl. If using icing powder, stir in milk until mixture is thick and holds its shape when piped. If using icing sugar, lightly whisk egg white until frothy, add sifted icing sugar and whisk until mixture is thick (you don’t want it too runny). Transfer half of the royal icing to a bowl and stir in cocoa. Divide remaining mixture into 3 bowls and tint one green, one red and leave one white. Transfer each quantity of icing to a piping bag fitted with a fine plain nozzle or transfer to a small ziplock bag, and snip a small hole in one corner.
Using markings on the house and step photos as a guide, pipe white icing on windows and door and create a doorknob. Pipe panelling lines using chocolate icing. Using green icing, attach TeeVee Snack halves on base of front of house under windows, then pipe leaf detail on top to form flower pots. Pipe green leaf detail under windows on back of house, and also around windows on walls. In chocolate icing, pipe garland on 1 roof panel (for front of house), then use white, red and green icing to pipe small dots either side to create a string of lights. Set pieces aside for 1 hour to set fully.
Pipe icing along side edges of 1 wall. Stand upright, using a small glass jar for support. Pipe icing along back corner edge of front of house (decoration facing the front). Stand upright on cake board and attach to wall, using another jar for support to hold upright. Repeat with other wall and back of house. Once all 4 pieces are joined, stand for 30 minutes or until icing has set. Remove jars.
Pipe icing along top of the front of house and place 1 verandah panel on top of the edge (sitting it about halfway on the edge so you have space to rest the roof panel later). Place a small box underneath the verandah panel for support while it sets. Repeat with verandah panel on the back and stand homestead for 30 minutes to set completely.
Pipe icing along tops of walls, and also front and back of house if needed. Carefully place 1 roof panel at a time. Stand for 1 hour at room temperature to fully set.
Arrange wafers on a board to form base of house. Place house on wafers. Arrange choc fingers under verandahs, trimming to fit if needed.
To make wreath for front of house, roll small pieces of green ready to roll icing into balls and set aside until firm. With edible sugar glue, join balls in a wreath shape with 2 rounds. Using a silicone bow mould (buy online from cake decorating suppliers), press a little red ready to roll icing into mould. Set aside until firm, then unmould (or buy bow-shaped sprinkles if desired). Attach bow to wreath base, then attach wreath to front of house using a little royal icing. Add gingerbread koalas to scene as suits.
Make gingerbread dough following instructions to Step 3. Roll out dough between 2 sheets of baking paper to 5mm thick, and use animal cutters to cut shapes (we used the Mondo Australian Cookie Cutter Set, $15, from Spotlight). Put shapes on a lined baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes, at same temperature as homestead, until golden. Make royal icing. Tint it grey, black, light brown and dark brown using gel food colourings, leaving a small amount untinted. Using the picture on page 64 as a guide, pipe outlines onto biscuits (you may need to add a little extra icing powder or icing sugar to get icing nice and thick). Leave to set for 30 minutes, then fill in with more icing. Stand at room temperature for 1 hour to set fully, then pipe on face details. Makes about 12 biscuits.
*Only with the Christmas 2021 issue of Better Homes and Gardens when purchased in Australian newsagents. Just $1.00 more. One per issue. While stocks last. Two colours to choose from.
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