Your kids will squeal with delight when they see what you’ve got cooking up in the kitchen this holiday season: their very own Angry Bird Christmas gingerbread bird house. This is the perfect holiday project and the kids will get a total kick out of creating the characters from purchased fondant. (In fact, you just might get them to set the game down for a few hours). First gingerbread house? We’ve got you covered with photo instructions that will walk you through each step in total detail. Make it as simple or as challenging as you want. For example, assemble the simple main birdhouse with one Angry Bird character, or go for broke and roll out the entire flock. And the template? All you need is a sheet of note paper and a ruler. Sources for the additional tools and ingredients are provided. Fire away!
STEP 1: MAKE FRONT AND BACK OF HOUSE TEMPLATE | You will need three sheets of 21x30cm pieces of paper (standard size notebook paper) for the templates. Take the first piece of paper and tear it in half. Take one piece and fold the top corners down to form a triangle shape at the top of the paper. This will be the template for the front and back of the house.
STEP 2: MAKE SIDE OF THE HOUSE TEMPLATE | Take the remaining half and tear it in half. Trim 1.5cm from the long end. This will be the template for the sides of the house.
STEP 3: MAKE ROOF TEMPLATE | Take the second sheet of paper and tear it in half. Trim 5cm from the long end. This piece will be the template for the roof.
STEP 4: MAKE OPTIONAL SCAFFOLD TEMPLATE | You can just make the house or continue to add a simple Angry Bird scaffold just like in the game. Take the remaining half of the second sheet of paper and fold it into thirds.
STEP 5: CUT THE PIECES FOR THE SCAFFOLD TEMPLATE | Tear off one piece and set aside. Unfold the remaining piece and fold it in quarters. Tear the pieces apart and reserve one square. These two pieces are all that you need for the scaffold.
STEP 6: FINAL TEMPLATE PIECES | This is what you should have reserved for the template and the approximate measurements of the pieces.
STEP 7: MAKE DOUGH, CHILL DOUGH, ROLL THE DOUGH | Make the dough and chill until firm enough to roll. The easiest (and least messy) way to cut out your pieces for the house is to roll the dough onto a sheet of parchment paper (that’s big enough to fit your baking pan). Use a bit of flour if you need to. With the parchment on the counter, roll a portion of dough to about 4mm thick and then slide it onto your pan. Place a template on the dough to make sure it fits.
STEP 8: CUT OUT PIECES | Use a kid-friendly bench cutter (or knife), and cut around the template.
STEP 9: PULL OFF EXCESS DOUGH | Pull the extra dough from the cut piece to reveal a neat shape.
STEP 10: CUT HOLE FOR BIRD HOUSE AND BAKE | For the front of the birdhouse, cut a circle about 7cm in diameter for the bird hole. A glass is a handy tool for this. Use the back of a pastry tip to cut out a small hole underneath. This is where you will place your bird stick. Bake until it’s golden and firm, about 20 minutes. You want the cookie to be as hard as possible (without burning), so that it will be sturdy. Continue to cut your pieces for the house and baking them. You will need total: front of house, back of house, two sides of the house, two pieces for the roof. For the scaffold, you will need: one long piece, three square shapes. Don’t worry about any mishaps, there is extra dough in case you need it.
STEP 11: MAKE FROSTING | When the pieces for the house are cool, whip up the frosting. Make sure it’s stiff so that it will cement everything together properly. This frosting dries quickly, so make sure to keep unused portions wrapped well.
STEP 12: BUILD THE FRONT AND SIDES OF THE HOUSE | Grab a large platter, the front of the birdhouse, and a side. Place some frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and squirt frosting along the bottoms of the pieces and the sides that will attach to each other. Stick them together on the platter and hold for a minute until they’re secure.
STEP 13: BUILD THE BACK AND SIDE WALLS OF THE HOUSE | Frost along the bottom of the platter where the back of the house will go, as well as along the side of the wall that’s already standing. Secure the back of the house.
STEP 14: SECURE THE SIDE OF THE HOUSE | Pipe frosting along the inside of the back of the house and the bottom of the platter and fit the last side into the house.
STEP 15: SECURE THE ROOF | Pipe frosting along the top to glue a roof piece on.
STEP 16: PLACE A ROOF PIECE ON | Be gentle here, so as not to collapse the house.
STEP 17: PLACE THE SECOND ROOD PIECE ON | Once you’ve done this, you can stop…or continue on to make the scaffold.
STEP 18: BUILD THE OPTIONAL SCAFFOLD | Decide where you want the scaffold to go and pipe to secure it to the platter, and so that the pieces will fit together as shown.
STEP 19: STICK FOIL TO SUPPORT | Stick a ball of foil into the scaffold to support it until it dries.
STEP 20: GLUE THE BIRD STICK PRETZEL | Pipe into the smaller bird hole to secure a large pretzel rod. Use balls of foil to support the pretzel until it dries.
STEP 21: COLOR FONDANT | Using a toothpick, dab a bit of green food coloring onto the fondant. The fondant (pettinice icing) can be bought from Sun Lik Trading, and
Wilton food coloring from Phoon Huat
STEP 22: KNEAD FONDANT | Knead until smooth and uniform color.
STEP 23: ROLL INTO BALLS | For the pigs, roll two balls about 4cm in diameter. Roll two smaller green balls and flatten. Use these for the snouts. (Dabbing the back with a small bit of water helps the fondant to stick together). Roll small white fondant balls and stick on for the eyes.
STEP 24: COLOR IN THE EYES | Use a food coloring pen fitted with black food coloring and make marks for the eyes and snout. Small strips of seaweed sheets are used for the eyebrows. The food colouring pen can be bought from Daiso, and Wilton black food coloring from Phoon Huat.
STEP 25: MAKE REINDEER ANTLERS | Break small pretzels in half and fit into the head for antlers. The small pretzels can be bought from The Cocoa Trees.
STEP 26: MAKE THE RED BIRD | Colour another piece of fondant red, and roll into a ball. Roll an oval piece of fondant and flatten with a rolling pin.
STEP 27: MAKE BEAK | Press the flattened piece onto the bottom of the ball. This will be the white breast. Shape a small piece of orange fondant into a cone shape for the beak and stick a toothpick half into it.
STEP 28: FINISHED RED ANGRY BIRD | Shape a cone shape for the feather tuft on top of the head and stick it on.
STEP 29: MAKE THE BLUE ANGRY BIRD | Follow the same steps as for the red Angry Bird, except with blue fondant.
STEP 30: MAKE THE YELLOW ANGRY BIRD | Follow the same steps as for the red Angry Bird, except with yellow fondant.
STEP 31: PUT EAR MUFFS ON PIG | This is optional but too cute to pass up on.
STEP 32: DECORATE THE TREES | Take a few sugar cones and pipe on a frosting 'garland'. Stick pink jellybeans into the frosting before it dries. The sugar cones can be bought at Fairprice or Jason's Marketplace; the jelly beans from The Cocoa Trees.
STEP 33: DECORATE THE BIRDHOUSE | Pipe frosting around the border of the roof and walls and decorate with candy. The candy cane kisses can be bought at The Cocoa Trees.
STEP 34: FILL WITH 'SNOW' | Spoon extra frosting onto the bottom, creating snow drifts. Dust the top with coarse white sugar, white sprinkles. Dessicated coconut also makes a great snowy look. The white snowflake sprinkles can be bought at Sun Lik Trading.
STEP 35: FINISH | Place your trees, pigs, and angry birds and you’re all done. Merry Christmas!