Spending time with family this holiday season certainly brought out some great stories about our dogs and our favorite treats–for dogs. My Aunt Helena told me about this dog treats recipe that she received from a gal she works with; Turns out the recipe was put together by a lady named Stella. Here I am, joining the doggie chain gang and delivered the message! I guess you can say the recipe was “handed down”. Dogs love peanut butter, bacon, and poultry, right? How about a homemade treat for them? With some time off last weekend I took a swing at making the dog treats. If you’re looking for some fun “down time” that will benefit your dog, here are some great homemade recipes.
Start out by mixing these dry ingredients together:
- 8 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
- 5 cups whole wheat or spelt flour
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 4 cups mixed flours of your choice (I used 2 cups brown rice flour, 1 cup dark rye
flour, and 1 cup semolina flour for this batch.)
- 2 cups dry milk powder
- ½ cup bran (wheat or oat)
- ½ cup wheat germ
- 2 Tbs. salt
- 2 Tbs. instant or fast-acting yeast
In a separate bowl, mix these wet Ingredients
- 5 large eggs
- 4 cups very hot water (If you have any left-over broth in the refrigerator, substitute for some of the water.)
- 2 Tbs. dark molasses (or honey)
Now to flavor the ingredients listed above, add the following (depending on which flavor you would like)
Peanut Butter Bacon (Yes, our dogs have wild taste but go crazy over this)
- 1 cup cold rendered bacon fat
- 1 cup peanut butter
Chicken, Turkey or Duck
- 2 cups cold rendered duck, chicken, or turkey fat
* If you just make one flavor treat, you will not divide the ingredients. Simply use 4 cups of a single fat if NOT dividing. If you do not want to use animal fat or you do n ot have it, you can use 1 ½ cups vegetable oil for the 2 cups of fat.
Making The Dough:
- Mix dry ingredients together in a very large bowl until well-combined. Divide dry mixture in half, placing the other half in another large bowl. (About 11 heaping cups dry mix per bowl.)
- Using a pastry blender, cut the peanut butter and bacon fat into one half of the dry mix and the poultry fat into the other half until clumps the size of marbles form in each.
- Stir half of the wet ingredients into the bacon-peanut butter and the remainder into the poultry mixture until the mixtures just begin to come together.
- Turn the PB-Bacon dough out onto a well-floured surface and divide roughly in half. Knead each half until reasonably smooth and elastic, sprinkling with more flour as needed. Knead the poultry-flavored dough in the same fashion. (This one usually takes a little more flour kneaded in to behave nicely.)
- Cover the 4 dough balls with a tea towel or plastic wrap and let stand about 30 minutes. Refrigerate all but one of the dough balls.
- 1 Tbsp. melted butter
Instructions: Rolling, Cutting and Baking
For the dough:
- Preheat oven to 275F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll the non-refrigerated dough ball into an 18” by 20” rectangle or about ¼-inch thick. Cut out treats with cookie cutter approximately 3” in diameter and transfer to baking sheets leaving ¼” between cut-outs. Reroll and cut until dough is finished. Brush with beaten egg or water for a nice, shiny glaze if desired.
- Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes, rotating baking sheets from top to bottom shelves to ensure even baking at least once during the bake. (I only have three shelves in my gas oven, but create a fourth by placing a wire cooling rack on the floor of the oven.)
- Repeat this process one at a time.
- Turn off the oven after the last batch and return all the treats to oven to dry out completely in the warm oven overnight. Stand treats on end in rows, in order to fit all of one flavor on a single baking sheet, 2 sheets total.)
- Package treats in plastic freezer bags and freeze. Treats will k