Wednesday, March 21

Someone had a birthday!

Yup, Little Dude is now three years old!  I guess I can't blame his crazy antics and spaz-tasticness on being a puppy anymore.... *sigh*  

His birthday is 3.17, and well I just love putting the $1 Target headbands on him for holidays (the pictures are totally worth the $1 in my opinion), so he got to be a happy little Irish dog for his birthday!

So, we were off for Spring Break, and I really just wanted some downtime before returning to the crazy world of school psychology, so I decided the best way to do that was to make homemade dog treats while listening to the Doo Wop station on Pandora.  It was fannnnnnntastic!  I only felt a small twinge of guilt for staying inside on such a beautiful and warm (well, Fairbanks in March warm...) day.  :o)

So here's what I did for the dog treats.  I made a pumpkinesque treat and a minty treat.  I picked these because 1) I love all things pumpkin, and so does Rudder.  2) I thought minty treats would be good for his dog breath [gotta love that in the morning...] and 3) They would be orange and green which just happens to be PERFECT for St. Patrick's Day!

What's in them
Minty Treats:
  • 3 T oil (I used olive oil)
  • 1 Egg
  • 2/3 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. fresh mint (I probably used closer to a full cup...)
  • 1/2 c. fresh parsley (again, probably more like a cup)
  • 2 c. brown rice flour

I have brown rice flour at home, but didn't at my parents, so I went out and bought some more.  After some googling about why brown rice flour instead of the whole wheat I had, I learned it has to do about the amount of moisture needed to go with the flour.  Well, I didn't really feel like playing around with that (goodness knows that I didn't need to make rock hard treats that would chip a tooth... Rudder is only allowed one astronomical dental vet bill a year, and he already had one...) and I had to run out to the bank with my dad, so we just picked some up.  :o)

Not being a believer in adding ingredients in recipe-specified order [well typically], I just threw everything in the food processor (you were right Mom, they rock and I should use mine more often).  You end up with a nice stick ball of dough (sidenote: it is super helpful to get your hands and surface nice and flour-y before touching it). 

I went pizza dough style and stretched in out, then rolled it out to about 1/4".
I found a nice little clover-like cookie cutter that was just wonderfully holiday appropriate.  :o)  It's really a club (as in a deck of cards club) BUT I think it looks enough like a clover.  Makes me wonder why in the world my mom has cookie cutters in the shapes of the various suits...  Although, the whole cookie cutter selection was quite random. actually...
It took me forever and a day to cut all of these out...  I'm not a super speedy cookie cutter maker, nor did I really care to be speedy that day...  I also think I made well over 100 dog treats when all was said and done.  Overkill?  Perhaps...
Less than amused at my cooking antics (and naturally parked right in front of the stove)
Then you stick the little bites of minty deliciousness in the oven at 350 degrees.  Mine were in there for about 25 minutes.  If you make them thicker, than they'll be in there longer. :o)

Pumpkin Peanutty Butter Treats:
  • 1c. Pumpkin (canned)
  • 2  Eggs
  • 2 T  Peanut Butter (Again, I probably put in more)
  • 2.5c.  Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/2 t  Cinnamon
  • 1/2 t  Salt
 Made the exact same way as the Minty Treats, but the dough was WAY stickier, so more flour coating (I used the brown rice flour for this coating job) was a necessity.

For fun, I have pictures of the process.  Woo hoo!
Super sticky peanut buttery dough
Orange dog bones to go with green clovers
Then for the decorating...

I REALLY wanted yogurt chips, or even white carob chips, but the two main grocery store in Fairbanks had none to be found.  Once again, disappointment from the bulk foods sections...  Soooooo, you CAN use white chocolate, because it lacks the caffeine that is no good for pups, but then you're giving them lots of sugar...  So, I used just a wee bit.  Instead of using food dye, I thought it'd be fun to try coloring the "frosting" with natural ingredients.  Again, the bulk food sections failed me, so I punted.  I tried carrots with melted white chocolate chips (double boiler style)...
Yeah, didn't turn out so well.  WAY too much liquid in the carrots...  I tried straining, then it was too chunky.  Oh well.  For the green "frosting" I used chopped parsley with much better results.  However, the little parsley bits got gunked up in my makeshift decorating tube (woohoo for ziplock bags with the tip cut off!) so I didn't get to be as detailed as I would usually like...  I could sit and decorate sugar cookies for hours I think...

I made Rudder a big four leaf clover too:
I think he liked them :o)

So much so, that I had a hard time getting anything but a blurry picture of him...

All the other pups liked them too.  :o)

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