I have an unhealthy love of royal icing. Most of the year, it doesn’t bother me; I can go about my business and I don’t think about it. But around Christmas time I start seeing gingerbread houses and thinking of the thick frosting and its sweet, almost metallic simple flavor. And I get the urge to build one myself, if only to have an excuse to make my own batch of frosting. The only problem is that I don’t really like gingerbread (something I never seem to remember until I eat it again).
I do, however, like graham crackers. So this year I decided our gingerbread houses would be replaced by “Christmas Graham Cracker Houses.”
Dana took the entire length of the movie “Elf” (“You sit on a throne of lies!”) to build his Christmas graham cracker house. But it looked way awesomer than mine.
His fort was complete with a cannon, cannonballs, a turret, a flagpole (with a flag), a red carpet, and gold to guard. Pretty elaborate.
I decided I’d let mine sit over night before really tearing it apart and eating it. The next morning the graham crackers had already started to get soggy. No big deal; I was not surprised. I had thought it would probably happen. I figured I could put my house in the oven at a low temperature for a few minutes to get the soggy mostly out of the crackers and then eat them.
I was wrong. I left the house in the oven at 200 degrees for 20 minutes or so. It smelled yummy, like warm graham crackers. But when I opened the oven, this is what I found: The Christmas graham cracker house of gummi bear horror. Dana especially liked how the gummi bears left little imprints of their presence in the frosting, as if to say, “We were here! Do not forget us!” And to add insult to injury, the graham crackers were still a little soggy.
Dana’s fort met a more traditional fate, but stood up surprisingly well to the onslaught. That’s quality frosting. We think whatever soggy graham crackers and melted gummi bears don’t survive today will be donated to our cockroaches as their early Christmas gift. Maybe they too will have an affinity for royal icing.