{christmas in the future} Gingerbread House on the Moon

Every year a small group of dedicated friends gets together to make an epic gingerbread project that takes a cue from whatever this year’s Christmas party theme happens to be. Two years ago, for a Casbah Christmas, the tradition was born with a Middle Eastern-style courtyard house of gingerbread. Last year, we celebrated Christmas in Summer and put Santa in the pool, surrounded by a beachy scene. This year’s party theme was Christmas in the Future, so we took a few hints from The Jetsons and put Santa on the moon.

I am a fanatic about everything being edible, which means no supporting sticks or skewers allowed–and I insist that everything apart from the gingerbread and the royal icing is made out of store-bought candy. Could I make an amazing, edible gingerbread creation with marzipan or fondant? Absolutely. But to me, that’s kind of cheating, because I might as well just make it out of clay at that point. So my rules are pretty strict and this year was no exception, although we did use some edible silver spray to modernize some areas of the landscape.

MJ and Marghi worked the marshmallow Santa into his sweet (literally) UFO, made of gingerbread circles with a melted jolly rancher windshield, with a few gumdrops for structure and a Nerds rope for decoration.

Marghi & Mitra worked with me on the George Jetson-inspired tower houses, with stacks of gingerbread sprayed silver and lined up atop jujubes, jolly ranchers, lifesavers, gumballs, and Reese’s white chocolate peanut butter cups.

Miscellaneous candy antennae and other skyward protrusions, made with Ice Cubes gum, mini marshmallows, jujubes, gumdrops, gummy trees, and red licorice provide the final adornment for the stilted futuristic dwellings.

Once again Radha did much of the fine detail work and painstakingly laid out the lunar surface, using gray and black M&Ms, Sno-Caps, Hershey’s Oreo discs, cracked silver gumballs, blue and white York peppermint drops, crushed white lifesavers, mini marshmallows. Marghi and I worked out the big gingerbread slab for the backdrop, covered in black icing and studded with snowflake and pearl candy stars–and a highly inaccurate earth, hewn from blue sour belts and carved green gummies.

New guy Alex, who conveniently knows his way around a real-life construction site, was key in fence construction and final placement of the black night sky (and believe me when I say, you need someone calm and collected to manhandle a large, delicate panel of frosted, candy-laden gingerbread to get it vertical.) The reindeer were sprayed silver and penned in a gingerbread fence – and are eating silvery nuts and bolts.

Some details in case you’re wondering…

  • I got the majority of the candy at Walgreen’s, but I found a few specialty items at a big party store, like the gray and black single color packs of M&Ms and the silver gumballs.
  • The gingerbread project is constructed on two cutting boards taped together with packing tape and covered in aluminum foil.
  • The recipe I use for gingerbread is this one – it smells great, it’s sturdy and long-lasting, and it’s easy to work with.
  • The icing is key for this, because it acts as the glue. You can make royal icing with egg whites and powdered sugar, beat to fluffy. I don’t use a recipe, I just put a few egg whites and a lot of powdered sugar together and keep adding more of one or the other until it’s viscous enough to use as glue. If you leave it open to the air, it will harden, so you can put it in a ziploc bag and cut a hole in the corner and use that as your “glue gun.” For fine detail, use a smaller bag and cut a smaller hole. If you want to color the icing, use paste food coloring to get rich colors – which is how we got the icing on the sky backdrop black.
  • Now that the party’s over, I’m going to let my nieces and nephew eat it. They usually just pick the candy off and leave the gingerbread for the compost pile!


Here are some other gingerbread projects I think are particularly inspired!


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7 Responses

  1. Love it. Wish I coulda eaten it. Sad to send the g’bread to the compost bin.

  2. Lora says:

    This is so funny cute and creative. Just love it.

  3. This just made my day, I love this house on the moon!

  1. December 21, 2011

    […] blog called Off the (Meat) Hook. These will definitely make you smile: Jetson’s-esque “Gingerbread on the Moon“, “The Gingerbread Casbah” & “Gingerbread Christmas […]