Gingerbread Christmas Tree and Village Cake

This year’s gingerbread bake was actually two bakes created from the Mary Berry gingerbread house recipe quantities.

I created an interlocked 3D gingerbread Christmas tree with sweet decorations, and a marble cake edged in gingerbread house frontages/facades to create a village.

Process

I sketched out my ideas before then drawing and cutting templates for each element of the designs.

It was important that the tree boughs turned up at the ends, so that the decorations could hook on to them.
I originally planned to have orange slices layered with the Terry’s Chocolate Orange slices, but decided that these might undermine the fondant icing top, so served those separately.

I first baked all the gingerbread pieces, I had created templates on paper and then cut these from the rolled out gingerbread.

There were two tree sections, 16 house fronts, stars, hearts and trees.

The baked components, ready to assemble or decorate.

It was important to make the gingerbread thick enough to stand up. The first panel was a little thin, but I felt that I got the right thickness on the second upright. It stood up fine which was a relief.

The tree sections interlocked to stand.

Having checked that the tree would stand I devised the edible decorations and added them to the tree. Using Royal icing to secure it to the cake board.

The Gingerbread Christmas Tree decorated with marshmallows tied up with strawberry laces. I also used strawberry laces as ‘paper chains’ for the tree. The snow was royal icing, the windows in the gingerbread were boiled sweets.

Once the Christmas tree was created I knew that if the other bake failed at least I had the tree.

After they had cooled I decorated the 16 house fronts with royal icing details. I felt a bit clumsy with the icing but time meant I just had to crack on. The idea was that everyone could have a house front with their cake. I don’t have much cake decorating experience, so by creating the gingerbread village I could surround the cake with the houses.

Some of the 16 decorated house facades, cut using hand cut templates, inspired largely by the beautiful houses of Amsterdam.

Once all the gingerbread pieces were ready then it was time to bake the chocolate and vanilla marble cake. The cake is the biggest cake I’ve made, there was so much batter I had to make it in two batches.

Huge 10 inch cake tin filled with the marble cake batter – borrowed from my lovely step-daughter.
Showing the marble cake inside.

I served the cake with tangerine segments, tying in with the Terry’s Chocolate Orange slices on the cop of the cake.

‘The cake was bonzer.” Was one comment on the cake.

I’m pleased with how the desserts came out, it was a busy time as my husband and I were hosting 11 people. The desserts were a success.

Thanks for all the support in 2022. Here’s to a great 2023.

Kim x

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