Guest Post by Joe Hughes, the Village Baker
The Carolina mountains are the perfect getaway during the spring and summer months. Beautiful wildflowers grow across the mountains, the Biltmore is teeming with tourists, and the Blue Ridge Mountains are waiting to be explored.
And who better to take with you on a hike or to the top of a mountain than your dog? A walk in nature is all many dogs need to overcome their behavioral problems: digging, chewing, fear of people, etc.
If your pet is afraid of people (mine is), a treat is a good tool to reinforce your dog's good behavior.
You can even bake a few delightful treats using your handy dandy bread maker.
1. Homemade Beef Dog Biscuits
Homemade dog biscuits are a great way to know what your dog is eating. You'll be able to make the same (or better) dog treats you find in the store right in the comfort of your own home. A few necessities before we get started are:
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups wholemeal
- 2 cups beef stock
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup instant oats
- 1/2 cup powdered milk
- 1 tsp. yeast
If you have a bread machine, you can add all the ingredients, starting with the water, and mix until a dough is formed. Sometimes, the humidity in the room will cause the dough to be too dry, and in this case, you'll want to add more water to the mixture.
Knead the dough until smooth and tender.
Roll the dough out, cut into shapes and allow the dough to rise for 30 minutes. You'll want to bake the biscuits for one hour at 325F. Do not give to your pup immediately. Allow the biscuits to cool overnight.
2. Peanut Butter and Parsley Treats
You've planned a trip to the dog park, and now your dog is getting all excited. You'll want to pack some water with you along with dog treats before heading out for the day. Peanut butter and parsley treats are a great option for your pup.
And they smell super good, too.
You'll want to make sure you understand how to bake at higher elevations before proceeding. Water boils faster at higher elevations because of the pressure.
Now, you'll need to grab a few essentials to get the ball rolling:
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup quick rolled oats
- 1 cup peanut butter
- 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tbsp. dried parsley
Preheat your oven to 300F and grease a few baking sheets or cover them in parchment paper before beginning.
In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, dried milk, salt, oats and parsley. Add in the eggs and peanut butter, mixing to combine the mixture. You'll have a crumbly consistency at this point. Now, add in the water, adding enough for the dough to come together.
Roll the dough to 1/4" thickness and cut into desired shapes.
Bake for 40 – 60 minutes, or until done.
Allow to cool for an hour before giving to your pet.
3. Chicken Dog Biscuits or Cookies
Dogs love chicken. One of the things I was told was to have a lot of treats available when my mother adopted a dog. A lot of seniors forget how energetic dogs can be, and this leads to dogs barking, chewing and crying.
A treat, or two, can help correct these issues pronto.
Chicken treats are my dog's favorite, and the treat I make is so simple. Place the following ingredients, in this order, into a bread machine:
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 cup dry milk powder (nonfat)
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp. Salt
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup instant oatmeal
- 1 cup flour (all-purpose works well)
- 1/4 cup cornmeal
- 3 tbsp. Fresh parsley
- 1/2 cup of shredded cheese
Select the dough option and hit start to begin mixing the dough. Allow to knead for 5 minutes before removing the dough. Dust your countertop with flour and allow the dough to sit for 15 minutes.
Roll the dough to 1/2" thickness and cut into the desired shape.
Bake for 45 minutes at 250F on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper.
Let cool before serving.
You can also rip off clumps of dough and shape them into balls, bones or any other shape. I promise, your dog won't care what shape the treat is.
Joe Hughes, known by most as the Village Baker, is an expert in homestyle cooking techniques, with a primary interest in baking. He runs the very popular website, http://www.village-bakery.com, which provides the latest homestyle cooking news, techniques, tricks, and recipes. He can be reached at Joe@Village-Bakery.com