It’s nearing the holidays and it’s time for a gingerbread project. Every year there is a theme and since hockey is a much loved sport in Canada, an outdoor hockey arena was what we worked on.
A sketch was created to scale and it took a few iterations to get the desired size.
Outdoor rink sketch
Stencils were made out of paper, the perspective used was that of a child in the rink, looking outside, hence the boards are high.
I tried a different recipe this year and the baked pieces were very soft. It was tricky working with such soft pieces as the large pieces cracked. If you want pieces that are harder after baking, then use the recipe that I used last year from Better Homes and Gardens.
I did not have any hockey player cookie cutters so modified the Ninja cookie cutters to get the effect of players and goalie.
Ninja Cookie Cutters
A candy cane was iced onto the hand to look like a hockey stick.
In the past I found the royal icing to need a lot of drying time and the structure tended to fall apart easily. I tried a new approach this year and used an edible glue that worked extremely well. Take sugar, water and boil it down.
Boil sugar and water
Take it off as soon as it’s gets a caramel colour. The recipe can be found on Martha Stewart – Swedish Gingerbread House How-To. It continues to cook so you have to work fast and in small batches.
Glue ready to be used
Be careful as the glue is very hot. You have to work fast as it dries instantly.
Quick dry glue
To simplify things the bench was made with long rectangular pieces of gingerbread stuck on top of a stand. This stand was made out of cardboard covered with aluminium foil. The stand was built using the templates and the thickness of the pieces were not factored in.
I did not make the icing from scratch this year and used a packet of instant royal icing. Since the icing takes a while to dry various aspects of this arena were iced and left to dry for a few hours.
1st was icing the largest section i.e. the rink. Red and blue candy were added for the lines.
The christmas lights were a combination of licorice strings with small candies on top.
The christmas trees needed to be iced on each side and left to dry.
O Christmas tree, o christmas tree
Here is what it looks like looking at the spectators (jelly beans) on the bleachers.
Outdoor rink – view 1
An official NHL puck a.k.a chocolate. Psst who is that waving?
Who is that waving?
Yup, there is someone on the penalty bench.
Outdoor rink – view 3
We took this to a party and let’s just say it was gone in the blink of an eye.
The good news is that the rink was very tasty!!! So I might consider using this recipe again next year as it made for a very soft, chewy and tasty cookie. It was harder to work with however the quick dry edible glue works very well.