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A Gingerbread House You Can Walk Around In

Hot & Cool Trends

By Cari Martens

Building a gingerbread house suitable to show company can be a challenge. A schoolteacher friend of mine built one a couple years ago that her family called a ‘gingerbread hut’ or ‘shack,’ due to its ramshackle appearance. She took the abuse with good humor. After all, she built it with the ‘help’ of very young children.

Mohegan Sun Gingerbread House, 2008

Now imagine constructing a gingerbread house on a life-size scale.

Each year, the Mohegan Sun casino in Uncasville, Conn., builds a gingerbread house that people can actually walk around in. This year’s model is 28 ft. tall, built with approximately 6,525 gingerbread bricks, and includes four 7-foot tall toy soldiers who stand guard at the house. More than 6,000 pounds of icing was used in all, and 3,500 gingerbread shingles were used just for the roof.

The house was built by Mohegan Sun’s culinary team, led by Executive Chef Lynn Mansel. The crew was also assisted by area school children. Visitors of all ages can walk through the home to view the tiny rooms inside filled with a standout stone fireplace made from gingerbread and dark icing grout, chocolate stockings are hung from the mantel, there’s a holiday tree, a chocolate rocking chair and a chocolate glass with assorted cookies for Santa to enjoy.

The gingerbread house will be on display until January 3, 2010, on the main floor at The Shops of Mohegan Sun. Visitors have been known to lick the house or to break off pieces to eat. Chef Mansel says he spends an hour or so a day making repairs during the exhibition.

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