Pretzel Log Cabin Recipe
Longing to live in a log cabin? The house plans on these pages put the next best thing at your fingertips. And a kitchen, not a contractor, is all you need to do the construction! This miniature abode, created by the CW Test Kitchen staff, consists mostly of ready-made ingredients. It's so easy to put together that kids (or grandkids) will love to "hire on" as part of your holiday building crew. So, if a real log cabin's not in your immediate future, why not put up this cozy replica this season? Then dream of log-cabin Christmases to come!
- 8 cups confectioners' sugar
- 6 tablespoons meringue powder
- 3/4 to 1 cup warm water
- Green liquid or paste food coloring
- LOG CABIN:
- 12 whole graham crackers
- Waxed paper
- Pastry bags or heavy-duty resealable plastic bags
- Medium dot (#5, #10) and leaf (#67) decorating tips
- 1 bag (10 ounces) pecan halves
- 18-inch square baseheavy-duty cardboard or piece of plywood, covered with foil wrapping paper or aluminum foil
- Spice jars and tall cans or bottles
- 3 bags (10 ounces each) pretzel rods (7-1/2 inches long)
- Serrated knife and ruler
- Assorted creme wafers (2-1/2 inches x 1 inch)
- Baking cocoa
- Cotton balls, optional
- Red-hot candies
- Golden raisins or chocolate chip cookies
- Spearmint candies
- Sugar ice cream cones
- 1. In a large bowl, beat the sugar, meringue powder and 3/4 cup water on low speed until blended. Beat on high for 8-10 minutes or until stiff peaks form, adding additional water, 1 tablespoon at a time, if needed. Remove 1-1/2 cups of icing to another bowl and tint with green food coloring for decorating and trees. Place damp paper towel over each bowl of icing and cover tight until ready to use.
- 2. To Assemble Roof: Place two graham crackers on waxed paper. Cut a small hole in the bottom corner of pastry or plastic bag; insert #10 dot tip if desired (or pipe directly from bag). Fill bag two-thirds full with white icing and refill as needed.
- 3. Pipe or frost one short end of one cracker and butt the other cracker against it, making a 10-in. x 2-1/2-in. rectangle.
- 4. Repeat five more times. Set two long rectangles aside for porch roof an floor. Pipe the 10-in. edge of a long rectangle and butt the 10-in. edge if another long rectangle against it, making a 10-in. x 5-in. rectangle for one side of roof. Repeat for other side of roof.
- 5. Working with one side of the roof at a time, frost entire roof with white icing. Press pecan halves end to end in straight lines along short sides (see photo). There will be about four rows of 14 pecans per row on each side of roof. Repeat for other side. Repeat for porch roof, pressing on two rows of about 14 pecans per row. Allow to dry, uncovered, overnight.
- 6. To Assemble Sides of House: With four pretzel rods lying flat on waxed paper, apply a 1/4-in.-wide strip of icing along the top edge of each, beginning 1/2 in. from one end and ending by icing the tip of the other end.
- 7. To form the front of the house, center one iced pretzel rod, icing side down, 7 in. from the front of the foil-covered 18-in.-square base. Add a second pretzel rod, again icing side down, at right angles to the first, placing it so the iced end is 1/2 in. from the un-iced end of the first rod. Repeat with a third and fourth rod, so that these first four rods form a square base with 1/2-in. end extending at each corner.
- 8. Add a second row, allowing the 1/2-in. un-iced ends to extend in the opposite direction (see photo). Prop sides upright with spice jars for 2-3 minutes until icing hardens, then remove jars. Repeat process until each side is nine pretzel rods high.
- 9. For Side Peaks: Place seven pretzel rods side by side on waxed paper. Using a serrated knife, cut the ends of the rods at an angle to form a triangle with longest one measuring 7 in. and shortest one measuring 1-1/2 in.
- 10. Frost the top of the longest rod; butt the next longest pretzel against it. Repeat with remaining cut pretzels. Frost bottom of triangle and adhere to top edge of one side of house (see photo). Prop with tall cans or jars. Add a small triangle of icing at top of triangle. Repeat process for opposite side. Allow to dry completely.
- 11. To Attach Roof: Working with one side of the house at a time, squeeze icing on opposite slanted edges of the front of the house. Carefully place roof piece on the slant high enough so the roof's peak is even with the points on both sides. The bottom edge of roof will overhang the side by about 3/4 in.
- 12. Repeat with the other side of the roof (there will be a slight gap at top center). Pipe icing along center peak. Press about 10 pecan halves end to end into icing.
- 13. For Porch Floor: Cut off the extending end of bottom pretzel at front of house. Spread bottom of porch floor crackers with icing and pipe icing along one long edge. Add porch with icing side down, butting it against front edge of house.
- 14. For Door: Using two yellow creme wafers, pipe icing on long edge of one wafer; butt against the edge of the other wafer.
- 15. For Windows: Cut yellow creme wafer into four 1-1/4-in. pieces. Pipe icing on long edge of one wafer; butt against one other wafer. Repeat for a second window. Spread icing on backs of windows and door and position on house according to Fig. 1.
- 16. For Chimney: Using full width of chocolate wafers, cut wafer to length with Patterns A through F. Assemble chimney layer as follows: Pipe icing on short edge of piece A. Butt against short edge of piece B. Repeat to put together pieces C, D and E. Pipe icing on one long edge of A/B; butt against C/D/E, aligning bottom edges. Repeat with the second layer of chocolate wafers; ice back of one set and press two layers together for a double thickness. Brush icing with cocoa to cover white seams. Spread icing on back of chimney; position on side of house as in Fig. 1. For chimney top (F), ice wafer pieces together for a double thickness. Pipe icing along slanted edge; position on roof above piece E of chimney. If desired, pull apart a cotton ball to form smoke. Attach with a small dab of icing.
- 17. For Garlands and Wreaths: Insert leaf tip into another decorating bag; fill with green icing. Pipe garlands on base of windows. Pipe garland or a wreath on the door and chimney. Decorate with red-hots.
- 18. To Assemble Porch: Cut four pretzel rods to 4-1/2 in. for posts. Pipe a dab of white icing on one end of each post. Position evenly 1/2 in. from front edge, on the porch floor. Allow to dry completely.
- 19. Pipe icing along one long side of porch roof. Pipe a dab of icing on tops of the posts. Carefully place porch roof over posts, pressing frosted side of porch roof against side of house where slanted side of house roof ends.
- 20. To Decorate: Insert #5 dot tip into another decorating bag; fill with white icing. Pipe along entire edge of roof, then pipe white icicles on same edge. Use remaining white icing for snow on base.
- 21. Make path with raisins or broken chocolate chip cookies. Adhere spearmint candies with green icing for bushes. Using a leaf tip, starting at the point, pipe green icing on upside-down ice cream cones for trees. Let dry completely.
- 22. Display throughout the Christmas season! (Note: If stored properly, your log cabin should last for future holidays, although it may require some minor touch-ups.)
1 serving (1 each) equals 7,727 calories, 233 g fat (21 g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 5,363 mg sodium, 1,368 g carbohydrate, 43 g fiber, 101 g protein.
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