Gingerbread Birdhouses

Total Time:
2 hr 5 min
Prep:
45 min
Inactive:
1 hr
Cook:
20 min

Yield:
5 houses
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • Cookies:
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 4 teaspoons allspice
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 package clear-colored hard candies
  • Royal Icing:
  • 8 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 2 pounds confectioners' sugar
  • 8 to 10 tablespoons water
Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For the cookies: In a small mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and allspice. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, shortening and sugar with a hand mixer. Add the cream cheese and the mix until smooth and creamy. Add the eggs 1 at a time and blend until fluffy. Slowly add the flour and mix until dough is combined. Turn out onto floured board and knead until dough is smooth. Divide dough into thirds and roll out to 1/4-inch thick pieces. Cut out shapes with sharp knife or dough cutter and transfer to a greased parchment lined cookie sheet. Crush candies in a baggy and spoon into cutouts. Bake in the oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until edges are slightly browned and candies are thoroughly melted. Let cool on cookie sheet. Decorate with Royal Icing.

For the icing: In a large mixing bowl, combine the meringue powder and sugar. Gradually whisk in 1 tablespoon of water at a time until icing has a creamy texture. Use the icing as a glue to assemble the houses, as desired.

Home Cook Recipe: A viewer or guest of the show, who may not be a professional cook, provided this recipe. The Food Network Kitchen have not tested this recipe and therefore cannot make representation as to the results.


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