Gingerbread houses originated in Germany during the 16th century. The elaborate cookie-walled houses, decorated with foil in addition to gold leaf, became associated with Christmas tradition. Their popularity rose when the Brothers Grimm wrote the story of Hansel and Gretel, in which the main characters stumble upon a house made entirely of treats deep in the forest. It is unclear whether or not gingerbread houses were a result of the popular fairy tale, or vice versa.
The decorating of Gingerbread Houses at Christmas originated in Germany during the 16th century.
Each year at school the Year 10 German students create their own Gingerbread Houses. Here are the students decorating their gingerbread houses and trying to avoid getting covered in icing themselves! Some lollies actually made it to their houses.
This activity is part of the Introduction to Fairy Tales topic - a topic that looks at the importance of the brothers Grimm in writing down many of the fairy tales we know and love today (Little Red Riding Hood/Rotkaeppchen, Haensel und Gretel etc) and the specific language used in such literary texts.