Gingerbread houses are a very traditional part of cold weather celebrations. It signifies the beginning of the winter and the beginning of fun activities during the cold season.
There may be lots of times you’ve seen gingerbread houses on display and wondered whether you can eat it or not.
Can you eat gingerbread houses?
Yes, you can eat gingerbread houses as long as it is made from edible ingredients. But if you left it sitting out for a couple of days then it likely won’t taste very good as it will have gone stale.
Gingerbread houses are perfectly edible but they are usually created with aesthetics in mind. So they are often made hard enough to support the house. In other words gingerbread houses are often left out on a side to be admired and the texture comes last.
What should you do if you want to eat a gingerbread house?
If you are planning to make a gingerbread house and want to serve it, there are some things you should consider like the amount of time that it is left out for and the proper preparation.
Always make sure that your hands are clean before preparing your gingerbread and reduce the amount of touching.
Next, think of the days you are planning to put it on display. Your gingerbread might be unpleasant to eat if you leave it on display for a couple of weeks. So you might want to plan ahead.
Then think of the building activity. You want your gingerbread fresh, moist and enjoyable to eat, so if you are planning to serve it on Christmas, start building it a few days before the holiday. You can also store your items in an airtight container and freeze it until the day of the display.
Lastly, think of the display area. Since you are planning to eat it then it is better to be placed in a clean area. Also, avoid areas that are accessible to pets or lots of people passing by.
Clean the surface and remove any dust, before placing your gingerbread house. If your gingerbread is going to be displayed for a couple of days, you might want to put some cling film over the top to keep any dust off.
How long should a gingerbread house last?
Most commercial gingerbread houses will keep for up to a month, but usually doesn’t taste good since rather than prioritizing the taste and texture, they are more focused on the aesthetics.
If you make your own gingerbread, it will last for different periods of time depending on the brands you used and storage. It can last up to 2 weeks if you keep it out of direct sunlight and display in a cool, dry area.
If you want a moist gingerbread then aim for it within a week of opening it. Aside from ensuring that it still reasonably tastes pleasant, it is dust free.
As for the leftovers, store them in an airtight container and freeze so it will last longer. Also, remember to check the decoratives. You might need to dispose some of it, especially those that have a short shelf life.