I LOVE holidays because they allow me to make little themed decorations without having to worry too hard about being ‘cutesy.’
“Oh, Meris, you made a little chocolate bunny with a bow tie and buck teeth? How chic!” Bring that chocolate bunny around any other time of the year and praise for innovation turns into polite suggestions for psychiatrists that specialize in childhood fixations.
So in the spirit of celebrating fun childhood holidays with Martha Stewart-esque dessert crafts, I saw these bird nests featured at Bake at 350 and decided to test them out before the holidays. These little guys didn’t disappoint-not only do they take a total of 10 min. to make, they taste good too, which is always a plus for cutesy edible decorations 😉
[Originally adapted from King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion-makes roughly 16 nests]
- 3 cups mini marshmallows
- 3 Tbl. unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 4 cups fiber cereal or dry chow mein noodles (anything that resembles tiny twigs and you can eat works great)
- Small candies, jelly beans, Peeps, etc.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Over very low heat, melt the marshmallows with butter in a large saucepan. Once melted, stir in the vanilla. Turn off heat. Stir in the cereal and remove from hot burner. Coat your hands liberally in shortening. As soon as the cereal is cool enough to handle (it still has to be hot/warm because you need to shape the cereal), grab a clump smaller than a tennis ball but larger than a golf ball and form into a ball. Press your thumb into the middle, forming a nest, and set on baking sheet.