Chocolate Filled Coconut Nests with Cadbury Eggs

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In Easters past my daughter and I, and sometimes her friends, would color lots of eggs and then decoupage pictures we cut out of magazines, add glitter and hot glue gems on them. Sometimes they were hard boiled (or accidentally soft boiled).  One year I bought brown eggs by mistake. But our favorite was making a hole in each end of the egg and blowing the whites and yolks out. I poked the holes, my daughter had to do the egg blowing. I wasn’t so good at that!   I have a bowl full of those blown eggs saved. I’m kind of a sappy sentimentalist.

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This is a project I would have enjoyed doing with my daughter. Plus Cadbury milk chocolate eggs are her all time favorite Easter candy. The nests were easy.

Ingredients:

14 ounce bag of good coconut

4 egg whites

1/2 tsp salt

food coloring (pick your favorite color)

1 cup Ghirardelli chocolate chips

1 pkg chocolate eggs

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Preheat the oven to 300.

Separate the yolks from the whites and, using a whisk, stir the whites and the salt together. Add a small amount of food coloring and blend into the egg whites. I used the Wilton paste and a little bit goes a long way. Just stir. Don’t whip.

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Stir in the coconut until well blended. Spray miniature muffin tins with cooking spray and put a couple tablespoons of the coconut mixture into each muffin cup. Gently press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of each cup leaving a nice indentation in the center.

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Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until coconut begins to brown a little. Remove from the oven and cool in the tins for about 10 minutes on wire racks.

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Using a metal icing knife remove the nests from the pans to finish cooling on the wire rack.

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Melt the chocolate chips in a microwave safe dish stirring every 20 seconds or so just until melted.

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Put about 1 tsp of chocolate in each nest followed by a couple Cadbury eggs. The chocolate will help to secure the eggs in the nests.

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Share these little nests full of goodness with friends and family. They would make a nice addition to Easter baskets or your Easter dinner table. Wrap them in a little Saran Wrap and tie them with pastel ribbon.

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NOTE:  I used my egg yolks to make some vanilla pudding. We will have that for dessert tonight with some fresh berries. You might also want to use a little butter cream icing in the center of each nest and use jelly beans instead of chocolate eggs.

Happy Easter.

Oatmeal Cake with Coconut Pecan Topping

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I am not sure where this recipe came from but I’ve been making it for years. It’s always moist and tasty and the fact that it contains oatmeal gives some of us the delusion that we are eating “health food.”  We had friends spending the weekend with us and I chose this for our Friday night dessert.

Cake Ingredients:

1 cup old fashioned oats

1 1/4 cups boiling water

1/2 cup butter flavor crisco

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

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Preheat oven to 350.

Combine oatmeal and boiling water and let it stand for 20 minutes.

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In a mixing bowl combine shortening, sugars, eggs and vanilla. Cream together until fluffy.

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Beat in the oatmeal.

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Measure out your dry ingredients and whisk them together. Gradually add them to the creamed mixture and beat on medium speed until everything is incorporated. Pour into a greased 9×13 pan and bake for 35 minutes or until a pick inserted in the center comes out clean. While the cake is in the oven prepare the topping.

Topping Ingredients:

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup chopped pecans (or walnuts if you prefer)

1/3 cup butter

1 cup coconut

1/4 cup half and half

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Rough chop the nuts.

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Mix all the ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil stirring frequently. Allow to simmer for 3-4 minutes.

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As soon as the cake comes out of the oven spread the topping over the hot cake. Allow the cake to cool completely before serving.

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Serve as is or with a little dollop of whipped cream. Oatmeal cake with coconut and pecans. It’s what was for dessert.

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NOTE:  I really do measure my ingredients out in advance into prep bowls. That way I can put my containers away right after measuring out the ingredients keeping my kitchen neater and I am less likely to forget to add essential ingredients.  Also, it’s important to whisk your dry ingredients together before adding them to ensure even distribution of things like salt and leavening.