This year, while brainstorming ideas for my annual gingerbread house, I came up with the idea for a mountain chalet. I decided the chalet could be one of Santa’s vacation homes. That way I could add some fun embellishments like reindeer and a sleigh.
I was trying to figure out the best way to display the reindeer. I didn’t have enough fondant to make nine of them, and I wasn’t sure how to make them stand on their own. I decided to do a stable so it would appear that the reindeer were inside with their heads sticking out. Even with the elimination of their bodies, I still wasn’t sure I had enough fondant to make their heads and still have enough left over for the roof of the house. So I came up with the idea of using gingerbread.
I rolled my gingerbread into balls and pinched one end of each piece until I had the shape I wanted.
I baked them on a cookie sheet at 350 degrees until they were firm. A few of them split a little. I think I baked them just a tad too long.
I let them fully cool while I rolled some white, black and red fondant pieces.
I rolled two small balls of white fondant for each head and flattened them between my fingers. I dabbed a small amount of royal icing onto them to secure the eyes.
Then I rolled two smaller balls of black fondant for each head, flattened them, and used a small dab of water to secure the black fondant to the white fondant.
I rolled some more balls of black fondant for the reindeer noses. I shaped them into loose triangles with rounded edges and secured them to the gingerbread heads with some “glue” icing.
For the antlers, I cut some pretzels in half down the center with a knife.
I carved some holes in the sides of the heads and used “glue” icing to attach the pretzels. This was the hardest part and some of the gingerbread crumbled a little. Next time I think I will either insert the pretzels before baking the gingerbread or poke the holes while the gingerbread is still warm and soft from the oven.
I made nine reindeer. For one of them I did roll a small ball of red fondant and use it as Rudolph’s nose.
I shaped some gingerbread into the body of a sitting reindeer and baked it like I did the heads. I knew I wanted Rudolph to be guarding the sleigh instead of hanging in the stable with the other reindeer.
The body looked a little weird, but when I “glued” the head on and stuck him behind the main house, he actually looked kinda cute.
I made the stable with gingerbread. I rolled it out and baked it to look like logs. The windows were made with fondant, and the reindeer heads were attached with “glue” icing.
The final product was super fun! I even added a few fondant carrots for the reindeer to snack on. Christmas rocks!