For those who don't know, The Phantom Manor is the name of the
Haunted Mansion attraction at Disneyland Paris.
If you choose to attempt a Phantom manor Cookie House of your own,
I supplied a free PDF template pattern you can download and print
(at the bottom of this page)
This project took about 9 hours, not counting the overnight hardening times.
It was not meant to be an EXACT replica of the Phantom Manor.
HERE WE GO!
I mixed a batch of royal icing (recipe here), and added black paste food coloring.
Paste colors can be found in many craft supply stores in the baking section. Unlike traditional
liquid food colors, paste colors will not dilute the icing, plus they produce vivid colors.
I also will color the sugar cookie dough with brown paste color, to make it spookier.
Happy yellow sugar cookie wouldn't convey a haunted look!
Using a pastry bag, I drew various lengths of the manor's roof ironwork.
This should be done on WAXED PAPER!
DESPITE THE PHOTO BELOW, DO NOT DO IT ON FOIL, THEY WILL STICK!
Let the ironwork icing harden overnight. They should be able to be carefully
peeled off of the waxed paper the next day.
The leftover icing can be refrigerated in covered containers
(or in sealed pastry piping bags)
but may need to be thinned with a little water the next day.
Just for the record, I am not a baker!
I bought 3 "tubes" of Pillsbury Sugar Cookie dough (1 lb. each)
and blended them together
with brown paste food coloring. Sugar cookie dough is rather sticky, so I slowly added flour
to the mixture, until the dough could be formed into a ball.
I rolled the dough in an ungreased cookie sheet.
Then I positioned the paper templates on top of the rolled dough, making sure they
were not too close. Using a knife, I cut around the templates and lightly marked the
window positions. Then removed the extra dough.
DON"T THROW AWAY THE TEMPLATES YET!
You will need to use them as a trimming guide after the cookies are baked.
I ignored the baking direction, and let my cookies bake for about 15 minutes,
in order to make them hard.
After removing the cookies from the oven, and letting them cool for a minute,
I used the paper templates as a guide to trim and streighten the expanded edges.
I let them cool and harden before removing them from the sheet,
and carefully placed them on a cooling rack using a large spatula.
I mixed a batch of black, purple, and dark green royal icing to use as glue, and to decorate.
Using black, and purple icing, I drew the windows, and any other elements which would
be difficult to create after the wall were up
Just as when you build a house of cards, the first two walls are the most important.
I applied icing glue on the base, indicating the positions of the walls.
I glued the first wall to the base and applied icing along the
edge where the second wall will attach.
I leaned them slightly against one another, forming a corner.
After a few moments of holding my breath, I attached the other walls.
(I find that cans of soup can be used as support while the glue sets)
The porch is supported by sugar wafers. Any unforseen holes or gaps are filled with icing.
The mansard roof was very tricky, but with the help of a supporting graham cracker box,
and allowing for a long hardening time, it proved to be very resilient. Yes, one side broke while removing it from the pan. The royal icing is great for repairs and since it is a broken
down old house, these sorts of mishaps add character! (That's what I tell myself)
When the roof is hardened, pipe icing glue aound the top edge of the main walls
and CAREFULLY fit the roof on top, being careful to keep it relatively straight.
Then do the same to add the flat top to the roof.
The tower pieces and porches will probably still need a bit of sawing
to get them to fit
and remember that gaps, holes, breaks and cracks can be filled in with icing!
Pretzel rods support the porches (cut to length) and cut graham crackers
were used for the side porches. (Patiently saw them with a fine serrated knife)
Hopefully your house will look similar to the photos below.
Now it is time to add the decorative icing,
I used a sawtooth nib on my pastry bag, and created simple shingles, using purple icing.
There are also many kinds of candies, cereals and cookied that can also be used as shingles!
I added the hardened icing ironwork to the roof. The dormer windows are cut licorice candies.
The chimneys are sugar wafers.
Candy pumpkins (with faces drawn on by my daughter), and a sprinkling of autumn
leaf candy sprinkles add a nice Halloween touch.
I covered the surrounding base with the dreary green icing, and dotted it with chocolate stones,
and more candy leaves. In the rear there is a small cemetery, with cookie tombstones.
In the end, nobody had the heart to try to eat this house, even though that was the idea!
So we donated it to my daughter's school, and it was raffled off at their Halloween Ball to
help raise money for the school.
Et Voila! Le manoir fantôme est complet ! Elle est magnifique, non ?