Remember spending long afternoons carefully gluing gingerbread pieces together with sticky frosting for your solitary gingerbread house? That’s amateur compared to this guy. Meet Jon Lovitch, the man who has held the Guinness World Record for the world’s largest gingerbread village for four years running and expects to again this year.
Gingerbread Lane, currently on display at the New York Hall of Science in Queens, and contains more than 1,200 houses, ice cream shops, fire stations, schoolhouses, and more, all made from gingerbread, icing, and edible decorations.
Lovitch spoke with Kitchn to give some tips on decorating your own gingerbread village (though it will only be even a fraction of the size of his edible city). First, he says to ditch the gingerbread kits and make your own dough, which allows for more creative license in constructing buildings. Next, only use dry, hardened icing and lots of it. He also suggests beating egg whites and cream of tartar in your traditional icing recipe to make the “glue” extra fluffy.
His most important tip? Don’t get upset if your creation doesn’t hold up to structural integrity.
"I've seen people cry, get sad, angry, frustrated," Lovitch told The Kitchn. "This is a project that builds teamwork and develops decorating skills. My number-one tip is to have fun!"