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Treats for the Birds

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Gertens has a wide selection of Suet to choose from, or you can make your own version following the steps below. This is a fun project in which the kids can participate. These bird treats are a great food source and needed fat for the birds in winter. Hang them in suet feeders, trees and shrubs near your windows to provide good bird watching opportunities.

Ingredients

Pure Suet
Cornmeal
Peanut butter
Variety of nuts and dried fruits, i.e. dried cranberries, peanuts, dried corn, raisins etc. (It is easier to work with if these are chopped into small bits.)
Birdseed i.e. black oil sunflower seeds, thistle seed, safflower, etc.
Oranges and lemons, cut in half with center fruit scooped out
Cookie cutters
Small dowels or wooden skewers
Raffia or twine

Preparation

  1. Place the suet in a glass bowl and microwave until melted. Mix together 3 parts suet to 2 parts cornmeal to 1 part peanut butter. Allow the mixture to sit until it becomes firm enough to work. Form the mixture into balls (about the size of a tennis ball). Put the dowel or skewer through the center. Take the raffia or twine and tie a knot onto each side of the ball with a loop between long enough for hanging. Roll the suet balls into seeds, nuts and fruit. Place onto wax or parchment paper on a cookie sheet and put in the refrigerator or freezer long enough for the balls to harden, then hang outside.
  2. Cut the lemons and or oranges in half. Scoop out the fruit inside. Push 2 dowels or skewers through the rind perpendicular to each other, forming an X. Tie the raffia or twine to these as in #1. Pack the cup with the suet mixture forming a mound that is higher than the sides of the rind. Dip in seeds, fruit or nuts. Hang outside.
  3. Cut a dowel or skewer the width of your cookie cutter. Take the suet mixture and flatten, leaving it thick enough for the cookie cutter. Take the dowel or skewer and tie a knot onto the center forming a loop for hanging. Press this dowel or skewer with the twine into the suet mixture. Decorate with the seeds, nuts and fruit. Place on wax or parchment paper on a cookie sheet and put in the refrigerator or freezer until hardened. Hang up.