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3 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp ginger
Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and cloves; set aside.
In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer for 30 seconds. Add sugar; beat until combined. Add egg, molasses, and vanilla; beat until combined. Beat in ginger and all off the flour mixture.
Cover; chill dough 3 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 375*F
On a lightly floured surface roll dough to about 1/4″ thickness. Cut dough using the house measurements below.
For the sides, roof, and base to the following sizes:
Roof (2): 7″ x 5″
Side Walls (2): 4″ x 6″
Front/Back (2): 4″ x 4″x 7″ (at the highest peak)
Arrange the cutouts about 1″ apart on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 6-8 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are light brown.
Transfer to wire racks; cool.
Spoon royal icing into a piping bag and pipe designs onto gingerbread panels. Let dry.
Pipe generous snakes of icing along the wall edges, one by one, to join the walls together. Use a small bowl to support the walls from the inside, then allow to dry, ideally for a few hours.
Once dry, remove the supports and fix the roof panels on. The angle is steep so you may need to hold these on firmly for a few minutes until the icing starts to dry.
Dry completely, ideally overnight.
Place the gingerbread house on a white or silver platter covered with powdered sugar or coconut to make a snowy effect.
Using your favourite candy and chocolate assemble and decorate a cozy candy shack for eating and/or displaying.