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Sunday, March 6, 2011

Jean's Bird Cakes ~ The Recipe

A dear friend advised me to sell this recipe....but after much thought and a few requests I decided I should share it for free.   


It took me a couple of years of trying different combinations to come with a recipe that would appeal to a wide variety of songbirds here in Northwest Georgia. 

Jean's Homemade Bird Cakes

Ingredients

About 2 cups of Lard (I only use the Armour)
About 1/2 cup Chunky Peanut Butter
About 2 cups of quick-cooking Oatmeal
About 2 cups of Cornmeal (I prefer the yellow and plain)
About 1 cup of Whole Wheat Flour

Melt the Lard (I do this in a big mixing bowl in the microwave.) and stir in the Peanut Butter until it has melted. Next add the Oatmeal and stir until blended....then add the Corn Meal and Flour. 

When all is well blended spoon or pour into containers...such as the plastic forms that come with the  store brought suet cakes. A muffin pan will work and other containers as long as you consider the size of your suet feeder. 

Then you put the cakes in the freezer. Once they are firm they will easily slip out and are ready for your birds to enjoy. 

You really can play with this recipe. If I am out of flour I just up the corn meal. The birds don't seem to mind. One friend in NC adds breakfast cereal to the mix and has great success. So you may find that the birds in your region loves it with seeds or bits of fruit.  One reason I like using Lard instead of Beef Suet is that as long as the feeders are in the shade the cake will not melt when our temps reach the 90's and above. Plus the Lard is easier for small billed birds to nibble. I allow some of the mixture to cool enough and I stuff it into my Log suet feeder. I have tried making it stiffer so it will crumble for Eastern Bluebirds. It did disappear but I was unable to see the bird(s) who ate it. 

Here are just a few of the many species of birds that visit my suet feeders.  


Red-bellied Woodpecker


 Brown Thrasher


Brown-headed Nuthatch


Carolina Wren


Downy Woodpecker


Pine Warbler and House Finch


Northern Mockingbird


Northern Cardinal

Of course the Carolina Chickadee and Tufted-Titmouse think these cakes are tasty too.  I hope I have convinced a few birders to start making your own bird cakes. Birds that don't like the ones you buy in a store love the homemade ones! 

Peace, Health, Wealth, and Love to All!

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