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Rick’s Gingerbread Chevelle

December 11, 2011

Last year I made this gingerbread replica of a 1969 Chevelle. I grew up and still love to draw (charcoal especially), but technical drawing was never my forte (buildings, cars, linear things), this made me worried about the proportions looking off. Since this needed to be unmistakable for a Chevelle, the safest bet was to downsize the proportions of the real life-size car. I joined a Chevrolet Chevelle message board and asked the experts (I know, I was shocked myself that such a thing existed).

I did the math, drew and cut out stencils from cardboard paper to be able to cut out of the dough. The bumpers were 3 pieces (since they go around the sizes). This would would eventually look like one uniform piece after it was painted with royal icing. I realized a big problem is the hood of his car, it has that bump for the engine (I’m not car savvy, excuse my non-technical terms) and also the sizes are not completely flat (slight curvature to them).

To fix this, I made molds with wooden dowels that were covered and shaped with tin-foil. The dough was rolled out on top. I was worried it would stick to the dough, but it was surprising easy to remove.

Confession: I actually made it twice. The first time I didn’t account for all the puffing up that gingerbread does, which resulted in some of the pieces to not fit properly. I had to scale down some of the top pieces the second time around so it would be a smoother and seamless puzzle. After the pieces were baked, I crushed up Jolly Ranchers in the windows and put it back into the oven for a minute or two to melt into a single piece of  “glass”.

I made brownie for the inside to have something to stabilize and keep the car together. I thought it would be super cool to mold seats out of the brownie, but the Jolly Rancher glass was so thick you couldn’t see inside, so this was a lost effort.

After it was all baked and assembled the details were piped with royal icing and later painted with silver (which looks bleak and dull in this pictures, but did look metallic in person). I learned how to paint with luster dust and vodka here. It gave it a great metallic shimmer that is completely edible. The headlights and stoplights were gum drops. The license plate is gum paste that was dried with edible marker to write his name.

Overall it was a success, but I would do some things different if I were to do it again (perhaps practice piping a bit more). I kept it at the bakery where I work part-time to store for a few days and did get customers suggesting to make their husband’s cars/trucks in gingerbread.  My biggest regret was not taking pictures of it (these are all from a camera phone).

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