Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Bird's Nest Cookies

Cute and Delicious!

As I have mentioned in previous posts, I am a sucker for cute gimmicks. I can keep a safe distance from regular candy, in fact I rarely eat it, but toss in holiday colors and put something cute on the package and I am sold. I know the candy tastes the same, it is just the cuteness factor that pulls me in. My boyfriend fears that one day I will be one of those people that decorates every corner of their house for each and every holiday. So far we are safe, but I am not going to lie, I often fear I will be one of those people too. Lucky for us we live in a small apartment with limited storage so there is no room for extra decorations (if you can call living in a small apartment lucky) so I am limited to holiday themed baking. This is how these cookies were derived. I was checking out the Easter Candy, which is the best candy of the year, and I came across these super cute egg shaped M&M's in spring pastels. I bought them with plans to include them in a macaroon bar, but then saw the recipe on the back of the package for the Bird's Nest Cookies. They were just too cute to pass up. I guess I just have to make the macaroon bars later.

Bird's Nest Cookies
adapted from M&M's Recipes
1 bag M&M'S Brand Milk, Peanut, Almond or Crispy Chocolate Candies for Easter
2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1/2 cup green candy melts

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Spread coconut on non-greased cookie sheet. Toast in oven, stirring every five minutes, until it turns light golden, about 20 minutes. Remove coconut from cookie sheet and set aside.

Increase oven temperature to 350 degrees. In large bowl, add butter and sugar and whip until light and fluffy; beat in egg and vanilla. In medium bowl, combine flour and salt. Blend into creamed mixture. Form dough into 1-1/4-inch balls. Roll heavily into toasted coconut. Place coconut cookies 2 inches apart on lightly greased cookie sheets. Make indentation with thumb in center of each cookie. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown. Remove cookies and cool completely (if your indentation is no longer visible, just use the back of a spoon to recreate it while the cookies are still warm). Coat indentations with some of the melted green candy melts (this will secure the M&M's and it looks like grass) and fill with M&M's.

Makes 3 dozen cookies.

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