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Homemade dog treats
December 29, 2010 - Marj Kline -- Toni Johnson
I have a lot of friends who have a lot of dogs. Homemade gifts are always easy on the budget, and go over especially well if they are edible. As most dog owners know, edible gifts are a dog's favorite kind of gift. (I also have testimonials that picky dogs, as well as cats have enjoyed these treats.)
Rounding up the ingredients was the hardest part of this project, but I did all the hard work already and I am happy to share it with you. Flour, salt, oil and chicken stock are easy to come by in the grocery store, as well as the wheat germ, if you know where to look (cereal aisle). Brewer's yeast, on the other hand, was a challenge. After a bit of thinking, and calling around, I found exactly what I was looking for at "Just for the Health of it" on Comrie Ave. in Johnstown. They also have wheat germ, if you prefer to pick it up at a local establishment. I am sure that the Mohawk Harvest Co-op would be able to help track down some of these ingredients also.
I chose to design a little label, featuring my dog's face. I printed it out on sticker paper and stuck them to small coffee bags that I bought online. Look for dog biscuit shaped cookie cutters at Complements in Johnstown, or any area party supply store. I like to give my dog lots of very small treats versus a couple large ones, so I found a pack of small animal-shaped cutters.
This recipe was discovered on the Martha Stewart Pet Projects page. It says that it yields 5 dozen, but it definitely does NOT. I made this recipe 3 times and doubled it each time and used teeny cutters. I am just going to tell you that if you double this recipe, no matter what size cutters you use, you should get about 2 cookie sheets full of cookies.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup brewer's yeast
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 cup low-sodium canned chicken stock, plus more for brushing
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, wheat germ, yeast, and salt; set aside
2. Place oil in a large bowl. Add stock and flour mixture in three alternating batches, beginning and ending with stock. Mix well.
3. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out dough to about 3/8-inch thick. Shape biscuits using a dog-bone-shaped cookie cutter or by cutting around a store-bought dog bone with a butter knife.(Make biscuits that are appropriate for your dog's size.)
4. If desired, you can spell out your dog's name or a holiday message in the dough with a toothpick (wet the toothpick first so it won't stick).
5. Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets. Repeat with remaining dough.
6. Bake biscuits 10 minutes. Brush with stock; rotate baking sheets, and bake 10 minutes more. Turn off oven, leaving door closed. Let dog biscuits stand in oven to dry completely, about 1 1/2 hours. Wrap as a gift, or store in an airtight container at room temperature.
I tweaked it for the darker brown treats and made them carob and peanut butter flavored, substituting a water for the chicken stock, adding about a quarter cup of carob powder, and half a cup of chunky peanut butter.
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Rocky looks on as I cut out some treats