To create a dramatic seascape, build and decorate the lighthouse on an inverted 13- x 9-inch (3.5 L) cake pan set on a foil-lined baking sheet or large cake board.
- Portion size 1 serving
- Credits : Canadian Living Magazine: December 2011
MethodEnlarge lighthouse patterns photostatically to make grid of 1-inch (2.5 cm) squares, or enlarge pattern by squaring method as follows: On parchment paper, draw grid of horizontal and vertical lines 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart. Each square on pattern grid equals 1-inch (2.5 cm) square on parchment paper. Draw each pattern line onto corresponding square on parchment paper; cut out.
Dust gingerbread dough with flour. Between waxed paper, roll out 1 square of dough at a time to scant 1/4-inch (5 mm) thickness. Peel off top paper; refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes.
With tip of sharp knife, trace pattern pieces and cut out from dough, rerolling and cutting scraps. Slide dough and waxed paper onto baking sheets; refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes.
Grouping like sizes together, transfer as many gingerbread pieces as can fit, 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart, onto parchment paper–lined baking sheets.
Place clear mint candies in resealable plastic bag; using heavy pan, crush candies. Spoon about 2 tsp into each window hole for panes.
Bake, 1 sheet at a time, in 325°F (160°C) oven until firm to the touch, 15 to 18 minutes for small pieces, 20 to 25 minutes for large pieces.
While still warm, replace patterns and trim gingerbread to size as necessary. Let cool completely. (Make-ahead: Store in airtight container for up to 24 hours.)
Remove 1 cup of the icing to bowl; stir in up to 4 tsp cold water, 1 tsp at a time, to make thin brushable icing about consistency of molasses.
Fill piping bag fitted with small plain tip with remaining thick icing; pipe outline on sides, overhanging roof and window base square. Using paintbrush, brush thinned icing inside outlines to cover completely. Let dry completely, at least 2 hours or for up to 24 hours.
Using thick icing, pipe along bottom and long edges of side pieces; attach to base piece and other side pieces, propping with cans as needed to support, to form bottom of lighthouse. Pipe along top edges of sides; attach overhanging roof piece.
Pipe along 1 long edge and 1 inside short edge of front window base piece; attach to overhanging roof piece on front side of lighthouse, supporting with spice bottle or container as needed.
Pipe along 1 long edge of 1 side window base piece; attach to front window base piece. Repeat with remaining window base back and side pieces, attaching short ends together to form standing square.
Pipe along top edges of window base; attach window base square.
Pipe along 1 long edge and 1 short edge of 1 window; attach to window base, propping as needed. Repeat with remaining windows, attaching short sides together to form standing square.
Pipe along bottom and side edges of roof pieces; stand on windows to form pyramid, starting with 2 opposing pieces to support.
Pipe along long edges of door sides; attach to front of lighthouse, pointed ends down and leaving room for door in between. Attach door. Pipe along top of door and door sides; attach door roof pieces. Let dry for 20 to 30 minutes.
Using icing and assorted candies, decorate lighthouse, tinting some of the icing red if desired. Decorate front yard and water as desired. Sprinkle with brown sugar for sand and blue sugar for water. Let dry until firm, about 3 hours.