Thursday, February 16, 2012

Oatmeal "Valentine" Hearts

I recently discovered something about myself. I enjoy baking Rose treats!! I love mixing together ingredients from scratch, and cutting out cute biscuit shapes!! I have even become somewhat of a "recipe-aholic", collecting them whenever possible!! I found myself visiting Martha Stewart's website one day.... For inspiration!! And this coming from a girl who has never been the least bit domestic!! What is happening to me....? Okay. In all seriousness, I feel deeply touched and amazed by the many diverse ways Rose has changed me.... Baking treats is one of them. Because when I adopted Rose, it was instantaneously apparent that she loved food!! So I thought: Why not capitalize on this? What if I baked Rose some occasional biscuits? We drove to our city's largest bookstore in March 2011, and there it was!! Displayed upon their shelves for all to see.... A dog treat cookbook!! Obviously, I purchased it. Baking those recipes were difficult for me. Out of my "comfort zone". At first!! I liked the notion, but clearly did not enjoy myself while baking!! I had to recognize who I am as a perfectionist. And I did not like what I was seeing!! Besides, Rose cares little about these treats' appearance, anyway!! Now, an incredible thing has occurred. I sing while baking!! That's right.... With a smile on my face!! I could have never guessed where buying this board book cookbook would lead me!! Not in a million years.... This touches me so profoundly!! The cookbook does not feature a Valentine's Day recipe, sadly. But I always receive candy on February 14th.... Including Reese's Peanut Butter Cups!! Which, of course, Rose cannot eat!! However, why leave her out on the fun completely? Rose is family, too!! So, on Valentine's Day afternoon, I baked her this recipe, using a heart-shaped cookie cutter:
Which Rose rates:
Four 'paws' way, way up!!

Peamutt Butter
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup water
2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup oatmeal
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, combine peanut butter, oil, and water. Gradually add flour, then oatmeal.
(Yeah.... I never follow the "gradually" rule when baking....) Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut with a cookie cutter. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes. Makes 2 1/2 dozen. (I must have finally measured this batch accurately, because they were much thinner than any of our previous recipes!! I baked 27!!)
Bake bones on the middle oven rack. If your dough is sticky, apply a light layer of flour to your hands, the rolling surface and rolling pin. (This dough was moist, due to its one cup water, but I never applied any flour!! I did, however need a spatula. To literally pry my doughy hearts out!! But sitting on the bottom of our mixing bowl beforehand was loose oatmeal.... So I mashed my dough down several times.) Because of variations in oven temperatures, monitor the cooking time for your batch of "Doggy Bones". Bake bones until the bottoms of the biscuits become medium brown, and adjust remaining baking times accordingly. (I baked my first cookie sheet of nine hearts for what the recipe said. Then something strange happened. My second cookie sheet of nine hearts required an additional 2 minutes baking time!!) If bones do not become "bone hard", bake bones for an additional five minutes or leave them in the oven as it cools. Store "Doggy Bones" in an airtight container. For extended supply, double your batch and freeze them!

Rose has become my gung ho little "helper"!! And she is the canine that always flees whenever I pull out a pan for boiling water!! Really?! As soon as I began preparing her biscuits the other day, Rose was right there--underfoot--eagerly anticipating something!! Well.... She was allowed a little peanut butter. My spoiled girl.... But the other afternoon, Rose's curiosity--her eagerness--toward this recipe seemed more intense than usual somehow!! Like a shadow, Rose followed my every move. I turned around, there she was. I pulled out some steaming-hot hearts, there she was. I set several on a paper plate, there she was!! Rose wanted a treat.... And she wanted one now!! My "food-lovin'" Beagle cross was waiting.... Rather impatiently!! And as soon as they were cooled enough, I gave her one!!
Happy Valentine's Day, Rose.... You are the love of my life!!


charlene and Storm said...

ahhh raelyn that was the best story, made me go a bit gushy too :)
its amazing how dogs change you isnt it.
im so glad your baking rose her own cookies, what a fantastic idea. im gonna print this page out and have a go myself :)
nice one xxxxx

Raelyn said...

charlene and Storm....
Thank-you for the comment!!
I have been baking Rose treats and posting their recipes on this blog now for nearly a year. Although she does still enjoy her Milkbones!! ;op
You are the first person ever to comment on one of my dog treat recipe blog posts!! Yay!! ;-D
I am glad that you enjoyed my story!! And.... Happy baking!! ;)

Stacey said...

oh i have to try these for my girls! your doing such a good job - Rose is one lucky pup! hope you had a nice valentines day!

Raelyn said...

Thank-you for commenting!!
Rose is not the lucky pup.... I am!! Or.... Perhaps it works both ways? ;op
I had a nice, low-key Valentine's Day.... Hope yours was good, too!! ;-D
Happy baking!! ;)

Ruby said...

Oh, how sweet! I would imagine the library has some dog cookbooks too, if you wanted to explore some more without spending money!

Raelyn said...

Thank-you for commenting!!
I appreciate the advice, but.... I love spending money on dog books!! I have my own library.... And it is ever-growing!! ;op