Chow Mein Bird Nests

Instead of dyeing eggs this year, even though I bought 18 eggs for just such an occasion, I made these cute little nests out of chow mein noodles and marshmallows.  Think rice crispy treats.  I used the mini-sized robin eggs to fill the nests.  I can't take all the credit, though.  I found the idea and the recipe at Bake at 350.  I made mine a bit smaller than hers, so I ended up with sixteen nests, each with three robin eggs.

Chow Mein Bird Nests
(adapted from Bake at 350)
3 c. mini marshmallows
3 T. butter
1/2 t. vanilla
1 package dry chow mein noodles (between 3 1/2 and 4 cups)
48 Mini robin's eggs, mini Cadbury eggs, or jellybeans

Melt marshmallows and butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat.  Once everything is melted and combined, stir in the vanilla, then remove from heat and stir in the noodles.  Line a cookie sheet or the counter with parchment paper.  Coat your hands with shortening before working with the noodles.  Grab a golf-ball sized bit of the mixture and form a nest by sticking your thumb in the middle of the ball and working your way around, keeping your thumb in the inside of the nest and using the rest of your hand to pinch from the outside.  Makes about 16 nests.  You may have to go back to some of the first nests you made and reform them slightly as the marshmallow cools.

I had my parents, in-laws, and brother over for Easter dinner, so I used these as place card holders.
They were super easy- just print the names on the right side of file folder labels and fold them over on themselves with a toothpick in the middle.  I know it's too late for Easter, but these would be cute for any spring dinner or bird-themed party.

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