Gingerbread housing boom

30 November 2012

Te Papa is building Wellington’s biggest ever gingerbread house.

On Wednesday 5 December, Te Papa’s Executive Chef Bernd Lippmann and Te Papa’s catering team of skilled bakers will erect a 1.8 metre tall gingerbread house made wholly of edible materials and begin the art-full process of decorating it with over 20,000 grams of lollies and almost 50,000 grams of icing. The gingerbread house will be on display in Te Papa’s Wellington Foyer on Level 2 until 6 January.

The gingerbread house tradition started in Germany, popularised by the brothers Grimm classic fairytale Hansel and Gretel. Bakeries were quick to join the craze and gingerbread houses are now part of traditional Christmas menus across Europe.

Say’s Te Papa’s Executive Chef Bernd Lippmann, “Te Papa’s catering team enjoy being challenged and finding new innovative ways of working with food. Our gingerbread house is a chance to share another country’s Christmas traditions with New Zealand kids”

Visitors to Te Papa can purchase a gingerbread house kit and make a smaller version at home. The kits are a limited edition of 300, selling for $40, and all proceeds will go to WellingtonHospitals and Health Foundation, the official charity of the Wellington Children’s Hospital.

More facts

  • Once built, the gingerbread house will stand 1.8m tall, 2.4m long and 2.4m wide

  • Baking and drying time took approximately 180 hours

  • 296,000gms of flour used – that’s almost 2000 times the amount of a standard batch of cookies

  • 4440gms of ground ginger, 2220gms of mixed spice and 2220gms of cinnamon, 15 litres of milk, 74 litres of water and 44,400gms of butter.

The installation, beginning at 5am on 5 December, will be captured on film and time lapsed. The final footage will be available by Monday 10 December.

Media contact

Tina Norris, Corporate Communications Manager
04 381 7233