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Make Birdseed Cookies

Kitchen kindness for feathered friends

Making a batch of bird treats is a fun way to care for your local bird population.

 


Possible recipients

The feathered creatures in your community.

What you'll need

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 2/3 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup birdseed (use small seeds)
  • 3 egg whites
  • Cookie cutters
  • Paper clips
  • Yarn to hang cookies

Instructions

  • Sift all the dry ingredients together and cut in the lard with a blunt knife.
  • Add the eggs.
  • Add the birdseed and knead until smooth.
  • Allow the dough to chill overnight.
  • Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into shapes with cookie cutters.
  • Insert a paper clip into the top of the shape to act as a hanger.
  • Brush the cookie with beaten egg whites and press birdseed into the top of the cookie.
  • Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet at 325 degrees F for 10-15 minutes or until the cookies are hard.
  • String yarn through the paper clip to make a hanger and hang outside.

Reflections

  • How do think the birds will feel when they find these special treats?
  • How does it make you feel to make birdseed cookies and see the birds eat them?
  • Why do you think it’s important to care for animals?
  • What other things do you think we could do for the birds?

Resources

  • Tea with Lady Sapphire: Sharing the Love of Birds by Carl R. Sams II and Jean Stoick (Carl R Sams II Photography, 2011). Ages 3 and up. Birds, nature and the relationship between a grandma and her grandchildren, a gentle reminder that the simplest pleasures can often be found just outside our window.
  • Birds by Kevin Henkes (Greenwillow Books, 2009). Ages 2 and up. A girl hears singing through an open window and sees birds, opening exploration into abstract, organic concepts about the natural environment and “what if” conversations.
  • About Birds: A Guide for Children by Cathryn Sill (Peachtree Pub Ltd.,
    1997). Ages 3 and up. Offering a basic introduction to the characteristics of birds, depicts birds in their appropriate habitats.

Take it further

  • Hang the cookies in a place near a window where your family can watch the birds eat from indoors.
  • Make “birds nest” bags to supply birds with materials to build their nests. Take a piece of netting or plastic mesh from a produce bag and fill it with things like dryer lint, pine needles, colorful ribbons, raffia, etc. and tie it at the top. Hang outside and watch your neighborhood for signs of your materials, especially ribbons in neighborhood nests.

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