I was making a dessert using Kadayif (Kataifi) dough, and it occurred to me that it might be cute to make some nests. That way, when you color your Easter eggs, you can put a nest in a salad/bread plate by everyone's place setting and put one of the eggs in it. 😊
That would never work in our house though, so I'm planning to make some nests to fill with a different dessert for Easter this year. The reason it wouldn't work for us is that selecting your egg in an Armenian household is serious business! I used to think it was just Armenians who do this, but in recent years, I've come across a few other
weirdos folks who do it as well. Everyone picks their egg (kinda like choosing your fortune cookie), and after dinner, you duel with them. You grip your egg and someone else grips theirs, then you smack the tips together. If yours breaks, you lose. When all is said and done, there should be one person with an unbroken egg. They are said to have good luck for the year. I suppose I could have everyone pre-select their egg and then nest them, but too late, I'm already using the nests for something else now. And by the way, we do use white eggs for Easter. We just haven't gotten them yet, so I was using the brown egg as a stand in for demonstration purposes.
I hardly ever see Kadayif dough in supermarkets, but if you have a Middle Eastern restaurant or bakery in your area, you can usually get it from them, especially around a holiday. If not, you could probably do the same thing with jumbo shredded wheat cereal. Do they still make those big ones? Heck, you could probably use ramen noodles. If you try the cereal or noodles, make sure to soak them first to soften them up.
This is how the dough is usually packaged ...
Here's what it looks like when you open it. Mine still has a little frost on it from being in the freezer for a while.
For one box of dough, you will need 1.5 to 2 sticks of melted butter. Shred the dough apart with your hands, then pour the melted butter over it and rub it in to distribute.
My first idea was to mold the dough over the back of this little prep bowl, but as you can see in the pick with the egg, it ended up to be too thin and fell apart a little bit.
I decided instead to use a muffin pan with big cups, put some of the dough in the bottom of each, then press the prep bowls into the muffin cups and fill around them with the dough. Let them sit like that for a while so they retain their shape, then pop the bowls out and bake until golden.
There is probably enough butter mixed with the dough where you wouldn't need to grease the muffin cups, but I gave them a shot of cooking spray just in case.
As you can see, the muffin cup version holds together much better. Another idea might be to twine in some fresh herbs you might have on hand that are on their last leg and you won't be using them for anything else. That will make it look like your little birdie used mixed media to build her nest. 😉
Cross your fingers for my dessert idea ...