Most folk are probably finishing off the last of their Christmas cake, but I've just made a 4 kilo batch for the birds!! With a cold spell forecast I thought I'd make some bird cake to last me through January and into February. This is my recipe, and I know the birds will approve of it, as they have in previous years:
Ingredients - the following will make enough mixture to fill a couple of 500g yoghurt pots
100g Chopped Peanuts - if you can't buy chopped peanuts, put them into a food blender to chop them up, or place them in a heavy duty polythene bag and keep rolling them with a rolling pin to crush the peanuts.
150g Sunflower Hearts
100g Sunflower Seeds
50g Premium Wild Bird Feed
50g Dried Mealworms
As long as you keep the proportion of lard to filling as 1:2, then you can vary the quantities of the fill mix.
Making the cake
Chop up the lard into approx. 25mm cubes and place in a microwavable dish. Place in the microwave on full power for about 1 minute and then check to see if has become soft (it doesn't need to melt), if it is still solid repeat for 10 seconds and check again. The actual length of time will depend the wattage of the microwave and sizes of the pieces of lard. Place the seed / chopped peanuts etc in a large mixing bowl and then thoroughly mix the contents by hand.
Add the soft lard and using a wooden spoon or spatula fold the seed and lard in together.
Spoon the mixture out into a yogurt pot one spoonful at a time and then gently compress the mixture with the end of a rolling pin. Repeat this until the pot is full.
Putting the mixture out for the birds
You can either smear the mixture on a tree-trunk or branch, drill holes (about 37mm diameter) into a log and push the mixture in. Alternatively you can hang the yogurt carton (upside down) from a branch or your bird table.