Simple, no-bake Graham Cracker Mini-Houses are a sweet holiday treat. Use them as place cards for holiday meals, or hang them as ornaments on the Christmas tree.
Decorations are applied while pieces are flat, then pieces are assembled with melted bark coating in a plastic squeeze bottle.
While an adult should trim the graham cracker sections, decorating and assembling is easy enough for kids.
Makes 10 - 20 houses, depending on breakage and number of crackers.
Using a sharp knife and cutting board, separate graham crackers into sections. Each house requires seven sections. Set aside four untrimmed sections, two for the roof and two for the side walls.
Shape remaining three sections to form the front, back, and floor. For the floor, carefully cut away approximately 1/8th inch from each narrow end.
For the front/back sections, trim approximately 1/4 inch from one narrow end, and shape cut end into pointed gable. Measure length o front side walls so that it is equal to side wall.
Coarsely chop bark coating. Fill squeeze bottle half full of chopped bark coating or candy melts. Microwave the bark coating for one minute. Take the bottle out of the microwave, and squeeze and squish the bark inside. Keep microwaving and squeezing until all the candy is melted.
Place red and green candy melts into corners of two food storage bags. Do not seal the bag; insert bags into a heatproof measuring cup, and place in the microwave. Heat at high power for 30 seconds. Remove the bags, and knead to distribute heat evenly. Repeat until candy melts are all melted.
Snip a tiny hole in the pointed end of the food storage bags with melted red and green candy melts, and twist the candy into the corner of each bag.
Use the squeeze bottle and improvised pastry bags to pipe decoration on each graham section. Add a door, windows, shutters, and a little wreath.
Decorate the roof pieces as shown, or write names on the roof pieces to use mini-houses as place cards. Allow decorations to cool completely before assembling house.
To assemble, place floor section on waxed paper, and use squeeze bottle of white bark coating to surround floor with bead of bark coating. Press the wall pieces into the bark coating, and add bark coating to side edges. Add remaining walls, supporting the pieces gently as the coating cools and hardens.
When walls are firm, squeeze bark coating along wall edges and down center of roof pieces. Apply the roof, and support it until the coating hardens slightly and holds firm. Use squeeze bottle to add more coating to any gaps or weak seams.
Cool completely before peeling from waxed paper.