This recipe is basically the more organized and involved equivalent of throwing scraps into a dog’s bowl.
I was trying to use up some food that was left in the fridge before I made my next trip to the grocery store, and found that I had some carrots that were starting to get a little bendy (you know what I mean? You know.) and that I still had a couple containers of the squash baby food we were feeding Penny when she was sick. I figured that if she liked carrots, I could mush them together and she’d be happy as a clam.
So to test this theory, I cut off a little piece of carrot and had her do a quick trick for it. Like she does with every new food, she went through her ritual of testing to determine its worthiness to be present in her belly. She spits it out on the floor, licks it, picks it up again, swishes it around her mouth, spits it out, takes a small bite, chews it for a minute, spits it out, picks it up and eats it, then finishes the rest. Does anyone else’s dog do this? Because it’s like she’s at a wine tasting every time she does this. I imagine her swishing her glass and saying things like, “This is buttery, with a creamy texture and flavors reminiscent of aged oak from southern Italy.” Because of this idiosyncrasy, I always have to give her two samples of food to make sure she actually likes it (and in this case, she did). Since she’s such a little lady, she always finishes her food – so even if she didn’t like it, she would clear her plate. So proper.
So after all that, I decided to go ahead with it. I grated the carrot so that there wouldn’t be huge chunks in the treats just in case she didn’t digest them all that well, and then mixed it with the squash and whole wheat flour. The mixture ends up being really, really tacky so it’s not meant for creating cute little cookie cutter-style treats, much to my disappointment. I’m trying to come up with Penny’s “signature treat” because I have a fantastic name and idea for them, but I haven’t stumbled on the right concoction yet. Soon enough, my friends! But in the meantime, these make great little snacks, especially for training since they’re little and it takes no time for the pup to gobble it down. They kinda look like little chicken nuggets, so make sure you don’t confuse these with your own food. I mean… maybe they taste okay for humans, but I’m just not the type to try it myself. If you do take one for the team, let me know what you think :)
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Carrot + Squash Dog Treats
[Makes 30 treats]
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 carrot, grated
- 4 ounces baby food, squash flavor
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl. If it’s too dry, add a teaspoon of water at a time until it reaches desired consistency.
- On a floured surface, roll out batter. The best thing to do is flour a sheet of parchment paper and then lay another on top of it, using a rolling pin on top of the second layer of paper.
- The mixture will be very tacky, so you can’t really use cute little cookie cutters on this. Just pull pieces out and roll them into quarter-sized balls and place them on a non-stick cookie sheet. Bake 11 minutes and then let cool on pan.
- Store in loosely covered container (tightly sealed will just cause them to get soft, which is fine if that’s what you want!). Enjoy!
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