Raiding the larder of ideas.

What one family eats, plans to eat, dreams of eating. Plus, other food and kitchen-related stuff from the home of steak-and-potatoes, pie and fresh green beans from the garden.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Pumpkin Cookies for Dogs

When the holidays roll around, there's occasionally a little fresh pumpkin left in our house after making pies. While many people have no problem with either throwing the half-cup or so into the trash, or burying it deep in the frozen wasteland that is the deepfreeze, I rather enjoy producing more gifts for Christmas. Even for the pets.

Not long ago, I discovered that said squash was good for dog digestion, and – more to the point – our big fella Clyde likes it almost as much as he likes sweet potato. And he LOVES sweet potatoes. In fact, I've occasionally just  baked a couple of large sweet taters, sliced them up, and dehydrated them to give as substitutes for biscuits. Indeed, one can even use leftover baked sweet taters instead of pumpkin, in this recipe.  Or, if you feel like splurging (or taking a shortcut), you can buy canned pumpkin or  yams. Most dogs won't know the difference.

And, you can use other flour for this, but the brown rice flour is the most easily digested, as well as being least likely to trigger an allergy in your dog – plus, it makes the best crunch. Clyde really likes the crunch. Especially when there's squash involved.

The original source I had for this recipe (long since lost) suggested a teaspoon of dried parsley, but I usually have fresh on hand around holiday meals, and recipes need more of the fresh for the fullest effect. Either way, it's especially nice for the rest of the family if you add some in to the recipe, because it helps sweeten doggy breath…or at least cut the funk when he pants in your general direction.

Any way you look at it, though, if you throw together this recipe, you'll have a happy goggie in short order.

Punkin bikkies on top of breath-freshening bikkies. A veritable cornucopia.

Pumpkin-Laden Dog Biscuits

2 eggs
1/2 cup pumpkin puree 
2 Tablespoons powdered milk (dry)
1/4 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt
2 1/2 cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley (optional)


Preheat oven to 350º F.

In a large bowl, whisk together pumpkin and eggs until completely combined smooth. Stir in powdered milk, salt and parsley (if using). Gradually stir in rice flour to form a stiff, dry dough. Turn out onto a lightly-floured surface (use rice flour, please!) and knead lightly until fully combined. 

Press dough to about 1 centimeter thick (somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 inch), and cut into biscuits (if you have a shape you want, go ahead and use it, but I prefer the simple approach: grab a big knife and cut a grid of rectangles or diamonds). 

Place on ungreased cookie sheet, and, with the tines of a fork dipped in rice flour, press pattern most of the way through each biscuit. 

Bake 20 minutes, remove from oven carefully turn over, return to oven to bake another 20 minutes. Remove from oven. Cool on rack completely before storing or giving to the dog.

Clyde, want a cookie? Do I even need to ask?

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