Contributed by: News Canada
(NC) - If you are looking for a ghoulish Halloween activity everyone can enjoy, why not create a peanut-free Haunted Gingerbread House? Decorated with Nestle Fav*rites peanut-free treats, it's not only safe for children who have peanut allergies, it's also spooktacularily fun to make!
Beat shortening and sugar until light. Add eggs, one at a time, with molasses and syrup.
Stir dry ingredients together and add in heaping spoonfuls to molasses mixture; stir until well combined. Divide dough into 4 balls. Wrap individually and refrigerate for at least 2 1/2 hours or up to 1 week.
Cut out and carefully label each pattern piece. Roll balls of chilled dough individually between wax paper to 1/4 inch thickness. Trace and cut out each pattern piece for the house; save cookie scraps to roll again as needed. *Remember to cut out windows and doors before baking*.
Transfer gingerbread to parchment paper-lined cookie sheets leaving at least 1 inch between shapes. Place in freezer for 25 minutes.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350 F (175 C) for 15-20 minutes or until gingerbread is firm.
Beat egg whites and cream of tartar for 4 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Slowing add icing sugar, 1/2 cup at a time beating until thick (may require less sugar). Add food colouring if desired.
Transfer icing to large zip-lock bag. Close and set aside.
Assembly And Decorating
Use the haunted house photo as your assembly guide, and use a foil-covered cutting board as the base.
Snip corner from icing bag, and pipe icing generously along edges of gingerbread to glue pieces together. Start with the walls, using cans or jars to support the structure as the icing hardens.
Complete structure by gluing on the roof and chimney with piped icing. Allow to harden for at least 15 minutes.
Use the 100-count box of Nestle Peanut Free Fav*rites to decorate your haunted house, gluing the chocolate in place with icing.
Nestle Canada encourages parents to read the labels when buying ingredients to ensure they are made in a peanut-free facility. For more information on Nestle's peanut-free offerings, visit www.nestle-peanutfree.ca.
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