Thursday, December 23, 2010

Under Construction!

My family is all too familiar with my crafting activities in the kitchen. Many of the craft materials I work with require heat: the oven, the stove top or an electrical appliance. When we built my studio in our new house, the family gave me strict instructions that everything was to be contained in the room and not escape into the rest of the house and they supplied me with a portable stove top, an electric frypan and a small oven. Bless them!

But today, I get to craft in the kitchen with everyone's blessing. With my son's help we're making a ginger bread house, the first we've ever made! I'm a bit time challenged at the moment so I picked up a prefab one at IKEA where all you have to do is put it together and decorate it. Sounds great! So here we go......In typical IKEA fashion it's a flat pack and the instructions are in diagrams but the one written instruction it does provide is to melt some sugar in a saucepan and use it to assemble all the pieces together. I'll have to admit that I've never melted sugar before but that's what it said to do so I guess that means just pour sugar in a saucepan and melt it. Hmmm.... OK, that worked! It burns quickly though so take it off the stove as soon as it's liquid and then work fast because it sets fast.So far so good. We left the roof off to make decorating the sides easier.

Next I mixed up some royal icing (beaten egg white, icing sugar and lemon juice) and then spooned the mixture into a zip lock bag.The zip lock bag makes a great icing bag - just zip it shut, snip off the corner and you're ready to decorate.
Pipe in a bit of detail and let it dry.....We decorated the roof panels next and decided to place one roof panel in place but we still left the other one-off so we could fill it with goodies later. This was all going along so nicely. But then we had a change of heart.... we decided that as the gingerbread house wasn't on a cake board yet that we would put the other roof panel on and when it was fully decorated we'd place it on the pile of goodies on the cake board.

So we melted some more sugar and tried to spoon it into place but it was drizzling where it wasn't supposed to and starting to make a mess. Then my brain must have switched off because I managed to get my index finger into the piping hot toffee and before I could get the toffee off it had already blistered. OUCH!!! This stuff is so hot! I plunged my finger into iced water where it remained for the next 3 hours. And still it was burning.

So that's as far as we've got but we'll have another go at it tomorrow once the burn has settled down a bit. Don't forget to check back to see how we got on.

Happy creating!

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Would you like to comment?

  1. That looks SO much better than when I tried a pre-cut out house! I was all thumbs and need more hands than I had to hold it together -- one wal on, two would fall -- comedy of erros!

    (PS, thanks for the post on The Hive, and I hope you'll participate in the Bead Soup Blog Party -- I'd love to have you!)

  2. Ah, Liz that's too funny! I was lucky and had a second pair of hands to help.


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