Building Gingerbread Houses in San Diego

Sure, you can purchase an inexpensive and easy to put together gingerbread house kit from almost any store — and they really are good family fun — but for families looking to add to their list of holiday outings, you might consider a gingerbread house workshop.

Last year Mallory and I attended a gingerbread house cooking class at The Curious Fork in Solana Beach. We learned how to make our own gluten-free gingerbread, how to shape, cut and assemble it, how to make the royal icing from scratch and, of course, tips and tricks on decorating.

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img_4676I’ve taken many cooking classes with Katherine Emmenegger, so I knew her baking class would be worth the $54. Please note that participants do not actually get involved with the baking, but do come away with the recipe, the diagram, a completely edible work of art and a wonderful mother/child experience. Classes are this Saturday and Sunday, December 3rd & 4th. Reserve online here.

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A few local libraries also offer gingerbread house building events. This Saturday, December 3rd, the Lemon Grove Branch of the San Diego County Library System will distribute 125 pre-assembled gingerbread houses on a first come, first served basis to children. Starting at 2 p.m., families can enjoy holiday themed crafts, a visit with Santa and participate in a 20-minute decorating session, while supplies last. Search these links for more information about what holiday events your local library if offering:

San Diego County Libraries:  http://www.sdcl.org/branch-calendars.html#LG

San Diego City Libraries:  https://www.sandiego.gov/public-library/news-events

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Here’s one I don’t want to miss . . . Queenstown Public House in Little Italy has transformed its exterior into a life size gingerbread house. This New Zealand-inspired restaurant is a great place to dine, especially in December when every child will receive a gingerbread man making kit. And, they will provide a gingerbread house kit in exchange for a donated, unwrapped gift for New Alternative’s Little Italy Toy Drive from December 1st – 20th.

On Tuesday, December 20, Queenstown will host its “Kid at Heart” gingerbread house decorating party from 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.. The winner of the kids’ contest will win tickets to LegoLand and the adult winner will win a gift basket. For more information visit queenstownpublichouse.com.

A couple of years ago the Mom’s Guide sent a lucky reader to the Park Hyatt Aviara Hotel in Carlsbad to enjoy a hands-on gingerbread house workshop. You can read about our winner, Joyce’s, experience here.  Led by the hotel’s pastry chef, this event costs $60 per participant and starts at 1:30 until 3 p.m. on December 17th, 18th, 19th & 20th. Reservations are required. Call 760.603,6907 for more information.

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Happy gingerbread housing!

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