A remarkable creation capturing some of the worlds most famous landmarks in a yummy treat!
For the gingerbread cookies, combine honey, butter and brown sugar in a pot and heat gently, stir and remove from medium heat once melted. Meanwhile, sift flour into a mixer bowl; add in the rest of the dry ingredients. Turn on mixer on medium – pour in eggs and then pour in warm wet mixture combining well – swap for a dough hook once combined and mix, scrape down. As the machine starts to struggle, turn out mixture onto a silicone mat and get to work – roll it out to 5 or so millimetres thick, cut as required with cookie cutters. Lie on a baking paper lined cookie tray and bake in a preheated 180°C oven for 12 to 15 minutes depending on the size of the cookie – ensuring similar sized cookie on the same tray to avoid mixing cooking times. Divide cookies 6 to 8 minutes. Large tier divider cookies 15 to 20 minutes. Support cylinders 15 to 18 minutes. Cookies range from 8 to 12 minutes. Lightly egg wash everything that comes out of the oven except the cylinders.
For the mortar, in a mixing bowl, sieve in icing sugar and in powder, turn on mixer on low speed – spoon in water, and a drop of colour – mix – add in another spoon – keep adding until you get the consistency you want (usually around the third you are there). Add additional colour until you match the colour of the gingerbread cookies.
For the chocolate, warm chocolate in the microwave in 10 second blasts until melted – spoon into a piping tip piping bag until it’s time to use it. If chocolate is too thick, add in a spoon of vegetable oil to smoothen it.
Assembly method, once all cookies are cooled, it’s time to decorate each iconic landmark and building layers to ensure they stick well. Firstly, using your ‘mortar’ – stick the 3 cylinders, which are the internal support, together. Mortar the 10” cookie round base to the 12” cake board. Stick the cylinders to each of its cookie tier divider. Secondly, trim wafer paper into 4” high strips. Mixing blue dusting powder with rose spirit, lightly brush wafer paper to create the “sky” – then mix green the same way and brush on the grass – earth section – leave aside to dry.
Decorating ranges from impression mats on the cookies, to fondant on the cookies with moulding, hand painting, stenciling etc. leave them to dry. Start to construct the Harbour Bridge as it takes a while for each layer to dry and be strong enough for the next section of it. Get internal lights ready.
Create wafer paper collar for each layer and secure them into place on each cookie round tier divider.
Start to attach each cookie to bottom tier with chocolate and use the candy freezer to keep it firmly in place quickly – wipe off excess chocolate before freeze spraying (if mortar is sticking well, use it instead – to each their own!). Once bottom tiers are all in place, turn on the first layer of lights and arrange accordingly.
Mortar the top of the first cylinder and the tops of each of the iconic landmarks – place on top the second 10” cookie tier divider. Add more to the Harbour Bridge. Build the next layers of landmarks using same methods as above, just remembering this tier is 8” round – etc. remember the lights inside.
Add more to Harbour Bridge 6” tier now – remember the lights. Finish by turning on the rotating cake stand, wind up the music box, enjoy the view and then dim the lights for another perspective.
This recipe has not been edited or tested by the Bake Off Food Department
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