The Gingerbread Architect

The Gingerbread Architect

A book of architectural blueprints and recipes brings new rigour to a traditional holiday project: the gingerbread house.

The Gingerbread Architect, published last year, is the brainchild of Nova Scotia-born architect Susan Matheson and American food writer Lauren Chattman. Approaching their subject with a rigour heretofore unseen in the pastry decorating world, the friends devised this collection of blueprints for twelve housing styles (complete with historical notes), along with instructions on the pitfalls of working with materials such as rice paper windows and easily meltable candy. Purists might want to begin with the Victorian Farmhouse (shown), and embellish it with the Color Council’s current palette. Followers of the Bauhaus might prefer the Modern House (a vision of white rolled fondant) or, in a flash of panache, the South Beach Art Deco House with its pink flamingos and Bubble Tape topiary (half of the fun, the authors point out, is the potential for landscaping).

A couple of weeks ago, the Chicago Tribune asked four architecture firms to respond with their own plans for gingerbread buildings. Blueprints for their creations, which range from Le Corbusier‘s Villa Savoye to an interpretation of the 1929 Barcelona Pavilion by Mies van der Rohe, can be downloaded, along with the story. The Gingerbread Architect is published by Clarkson Potter ($25.50).

Architecture has inspired far more than just gingerbread – click through for 10 more architectural desserts.

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