The December Daring Bakers' Challenge was announced just as we completed our gingerbread entry for the San Diego Epilepsy Foundation's Gingerbread City 2009. The theme for this year's competition was The Greatest Stories Ever Told. We chose The Wizard of Oz and named our entry "Fondant the Yellow Brick Road."
I had every intention to create a smaller gingerbread structure for the Daring Bakers' Challenge. I baked all my gingerbread pieces and started texturing the stone pattern I imprinted on the dough, with a textured fondant sheet, prior to cooking.
At first, I did attempt Y's dough. However, I found it very dry, difficult to roll, and prone to shrinkage. The Daring Bakers' Challenge dough recipes and instructions can be found here. I resorted to the recipe we used for the Epilepsy Foundation competition, which is very easy to work with, and very tasty! Our journey down the Yellow Brick road started back in October, with this post. Several other posts followed and you can check them out by going to the gingerbread label on my sidebar.
Here's my Daring Bakers' gingerbread inspiration photo of a beautiful, stone, Tuscan farmhouse
Ingredients for Y's dough recipe: Flour, brown sugar, spices, baking soda and butter (plus 1/2 cup boiling water)
Mixing the dough
Wrapped and ready to rest in the refrigerator
Unfortunately, I was unable to assemble and complete my little Tuscan farmhouse, due to a case of gingerbread burnout (after spending close to two months on Fondant the Yellow Brick Road), and last-minute holiday shopping and cooking.
Therefore, although it was completed just prior to the announcement of the Daring Bakers' Challenge, I am submitting my Tin Woodsman's Cabin from our Fondant the Yellow Brick Road.
Using a template makes cutting the gingerbread pieces easy. We made our template pieces from foam core poster board
Four walls, chimney piece and two roof pieces
Gingerbread logs, rolled and textured prior to baking
All the pieces ready to be assembled with Royal Icing "glue." I used a serrated knife to cut the logs to fit.
The chimney is covered with chocolate candy rocks
The windows are covered with edible frosting and gelatin sheets
The tin roof and window trim is made of fondant
The pine trees are made with fondant pieces, cut out with snowflake cookie cutters, textured with a rubber stamp cube with various leaf patterns, stacked and glued togethe with Royal Icing
Fondant the Yellow Brick Road, on display at the Epilepsy Foundation Holiday Gala, Grand Del Mar Resort & Spa, Del Mar, CA
After three years of gingerbread competitions, John and I are hooked on this holiday tradition. It was a great idea for the Daring Bakers' Challenge and I hope everyone enjoyed it as much as we do each year. Thank you Anna and Y!
Please visit The Daring Kitchen and the Daring Bakers' blogroll for more gingerbread houses, and inspiration for next year!