Sunday, December 11, 2011

{Handmade Christmas} Dog Biscuits

Yep, in our house even the doggies get homemade treats. Not that we have any dogs in my house. But we know a lot of people who do. Among them my mother-in-law, who's dog the kids love. They've know this dog all their life. With both kids I went back to work when they were eight weeks old, and they've been staying with my mother-in-law for one of my two workdays per week.

I'm getting sidetracked here. We started the dog biscuit tradition the year I first started making Christmas gifts. I use Matha Stewart's recipe and have slightly tweaked it:

  • I don't use mint, just parsley, and I add a tablespoon or so while my kitchen aid is still running. 
  • I always make the double batch. Yes, that makes a lot. A LOT. But it's not that much more work and you can always just roll it out and cut the dough into rectangles for your second batch. I don't think the doggies are going to care about the shape...
  • If you do make a double batch and own a stand mixer: use the dough hook. Really.
  • I bake mine much shorter, about 20 minutes or until they are just golden brown.
  • I never let them dry in the oven overnight! I take them out when done, put them on racks until cool and then wrap in cellophane bags. I do leave the bags open until I'm ready to give them, though. They last forever. Unless you let the dogs anywhere near them, that is.
  • For my German readers: I use Leinsamen for the wheat germ.  
  • If you make a double batch, you might not need that much water. I didn't.
Every year, I get help making them from my boys. Because they love dogs. They take turns measuring the ingredients, which is great because most of most ingredients you'll need 1 and 1/4 cups - so they each get one measuring cup. Here it's the cornmeal.

And in the bowl it goes.

The dough is one of the best ever, it's really easy to work with and you can re-roll countless times. It's sticky, but not too sticky. And little brother loves getting more flour. Everywhere. I actually bought one of those bone shaped cookie cutters, but anything will work here. We have done stars for Christmas, and those looked nice, too.

All the ingredients are things you can actually eat as a human, mostly it's different sorts of flours and grains, plus some butter, sugar, eggs and a little salt. So it's ok to have little brother try some of it. He didn't like it, by the way, but that's because he loves only sweet things. Big brother actually liked it, and my mother-in-law sometimes steals biscuits from her dog.

So you basically just do a lot of cutting, re-rolling and more cutting. We worked with three sheets at once.

When the first batches are cut out, have your helpers brush them with egg wash.

While I was working on the second batch, big brother made some star and dinosaur cookies from sugar cookie dough.

Here are the finished biscuits. Again, I've made these often and in large quanities and I never let them dry in the oven overnight or anything like that. I don't think you need to.

And here's this year's attempt at nice packaging. Uhm, working on it. Last year I did labels on the computer which also held the bags closed, but this year I was going for a handmade look. Hmmmm. 

So if you have an afternoon to spare (haha, funny, I know), some helpers and some dogs in your house or neighborhood - these are really great. I haven't met a dog who didn't like them. But that's the reason I do dog biscuits and not cat treats: it's a fairly easy audience!

Does anyone know a good cat treat recipe that does not involve canned tuna and a kitchen smelling like cat food?



  1. Das ist eine schöne Idee! Schade dass meine Katze nicht solche Knochen-Plätzchen essen mag, aber vielleicht gibt es solche Plätzchen auch für Katzen und die steche ich dann in Fischform aus!!!!
    Viele liebe Grüße und einen schönen 3. Advent!

  2. Ja, auf der Suche nach einem vernünftigen Katzenleckerchenrezept bin ich auch noch! Ich sag Bescheid, wenn ich eins finde... Du wirst lachen, den Fischausstecher hab ich auch hier liegen...

    Dir auch einen schönen Adventssonntag!

    Liebe Grüße

  3. tolle Fotos, Swenja! Gestern habe ich auch gebacken. Meine Kids (2 und 4 J. alt) haben auch geholfen :) liebe Gruesse


  4. Oh danke dir! Lustig, da sind unsere Kinder ja fast gleich alt - meine sind 2 und 5. Was gab's denn bei euch?



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