Walk into McCall's Meat and Fish Co. in Los Feliz, and the first thing you'll probably notice is that the butcher shop and fish market is also a pretty awesome bakery. The second thing you might notice, at least if you happen to have a large German Shepherd, is that the place has some spectacular cuts of meat, marrow bones and other things dogs might love. But that, happily, they also sell dog treats. This may came as a profound relief, since as much as you might love your dog, she doesn't need to eat expensive marrow bones or dry-aged rib-eyes, does she.
If you can't make it over to Los Feliz, or if you like baking bone-shaped dog biscuits with your kids almost as much as you like baking chocolate chip cookies, Robert Tarlow of McCall's kindly gave us the recipe.
Tarlow adapted his recipe from pastry chef Bo Friberg, author of The Advanced Professional Pastry Chef and other terrific cookbooks. Tarlow added oats and peanut butter -- something most dogs adore -- and bakes the treats in a much lower oven than the original recipe calls for. He also uses grams, as do most pastry chefs, but has thoughtfully converted the following recipe to cups and spoons for those of us who still haven't learned the metric system. If you're baking these with your kids, have them convert it back; doubtless they know metrics better than you do anyway.
McCall's Peanut Butter and Oat Doggie Treats
From: McCall's Meat & Fish
Makes: about 28 treats
Note: Use the dip and sweep method when measuring flour; in other words, don't pack it.
2 1/2 cups bread flour
2 1/3 cups whole wheat flour
¾ cup rolled oats
1 tsp. sea salt
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 cup natural (no sugar added) peanut butter
3 large eggs
1 cup canola oil
1 cup non-fat milk
1. Pre-heat the oven to 275 F. Combine bread flour, whole wheat flour, oats, salt and sugar in a KitchenAid mixing bowl.
2. Lightly whisk together eggs, milk and oil. Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients. Add peanut butter.
3. On low speed setting, use dough hook attachment to mix. Knead 3-5 minutes, until the mixture comes together to form a stiff, but smooth dough. The dough can be adjusted by adding either a little more bread flour or milk.
4. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a clean dish towel. Allow dough to relax for 15 minutes.
5. Roll out dough into a ½ inch thick rectangle. Cut out treats using a bone-shaped cookie cutter (which we use), or a dog-shaped cookie cutter. If you're more interested in speed than aesthetics, place rolled-out dough on a parchment-lined sheet tray and use a pizza cutter to create square-shaped treats.
6. Place bone-shaped treats on a parchment-lined sheet tray. Treats will not spread so they can be placed fairly close to each other. Bake at 275 F for 1 hour.
7. Turn off the oven, crack the oven door, and allow treats to dry out for another hour. Treats, once cooled, should be rock hard. If not, allow more time in warm oven. Allow to thoroughly cool.
8. Store in an airtight container. The treats will last for months, and can be stored in the freezer if properly wrapped.
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