Oswald’s Holiday Recap

The holidays are so over rated! I may start a petition in my household to cancel them all together next year.  If I can’t push that through, I will just hide in my room for the duration.

Christmas started poorly for a me about two weeks before the actual day.  My Butler took a trip for a week to Mexico and left me with a substitute butler at the house.  The substitute butler did a pretty good job, but I still had to let her know how I liked things done.  It was really rather stressful.

When the Butler returned she had the nerve to throw a “Holiday Extravaganza” at my house.  To make matters worse, she put me upstairs in the guest room for most of the party with the puppy.  I’m usually able to associate and mingle with guests at these events, but because the puppy was being put away, I was forced to join her and “keep her company”.  I hate being treated like a common dog.

I was still holding out hope that Christmas may be saved come Christmas morning.  I had made a very specific request to Santa this year regarding my Christmas wish. I have since rewritten to my (soon to be former) old friend Santa to discuss my disappointment that he did not fulfill my request.  I was sure to remind him that he still owed me a favor after a certain Arctic Fox debacle that I gave him a hand with many years ago.  It is interesting how quickly people forgot these favors when it is time to return them…

So Christmas day came and went in all of it’s misery and at some point my Butler even had the nerve to put an antler headdress on me.  I’ve never been so mortified.

Luckily I was able to find some solace in my cooking during this horrible holiday period.  I created a new recipe for my Christmas cookies this year.  I started with my favorite ingredient, bacon. Then I added sweet potatoes for a cheery color and some cheese for some extra deliciousness.  Once I blended all of that together I added flour until the dough was a cookie dough consistency, rolled in out, and used my various sized bone cookie cutters to form the biscuits.

I had to make quite a large batch for all of my friends in the neighborhood.  My Butler made some gift tags for me and then we walked around and delivered them all to my friend’s houses the day after Christmas.

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Now I am spending my days enjoying the cold weather and finding ways to avoid the puppy.  I have heard rumors that my Butler will be beginning some kind of nursing training in the coming weeks and I’m feeling uneasy about that also.  I can only assume this new undertaking will take time away from her usual duties that I require of her.  I will post updates on that situation as they develop.

Lastly I still do have a puppy “problem” that needs to be “taken care of” so if any of my friends out there ever dealt with a puppy problem of their own, let me know what strategies you used to at least make the puppy bearable.  I’ll try anything!

Happy New Year!

Oswald

Oswald’s Turkey “Gumbo” Dog Food

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my blog followers.  Sorry I haven’t been posting much, but it was hard to get a nose into the kitchen over the last week or so with all of the commotion around the house.  The Butler invited her family to our house for Thanksgiving, which served to be quite an inconvenience for me.

They were noisy, which interrupted my regularly scheduled sleep patterns.

They came and went throughout the day which often threw off my walk schedule.

They took up a lot of couch space, which left me no choice but to lie on the “dog bed” that the Butler keeps encouraging me to sleep on.

Finally, they took over my kitchen, which I was none too pleased about.

Once they all left and I was able to return to my usual routine and start thinking about a recipe that I could use the turkey leftovers for.  Then, inspiration hit me! My Butler often makes something called a “gumbo” for the humans with the leftovers from Thanksgiving.  Her process seems rather time consuming (something about a roux?), but, being the southern dog that I am, I thought I could simplify it and make my own gumbo.  So I did!

Oswald’s Turkey Gumbo Dog Food

Ingredients:

  • Turkey (no bones!)
  • mashed potatoes (regular, sweet, or both as long as the sweet potatoes don’t have sugar added)
  • bacon  (because there is always bacon!)
  • broccoli and carrots (optional)
  • anything else you want

Directions:

  1. Add all pre-cooked food into the food processor.
  2. Blend
  3. Add liquid if needed (homemade turkey stock works well!)
  4. Enjoy!

While watching Butler make the gumbo that my people eat, I realized that it is a bit of a hodge-podge combination of many different ingredients, which is where I drew my inspiration for my own “gumbo”.  Basically feel free to add in any leftover (cooked) meat, plain starches, and plain veggies as long as they haven’t been made into a “casserole” first.  Also, in your doggy gumbo, leave out the “Holy Trinity” of gumbo- onions, celery, and green pepper- as onions are not good for dogs.

So eat up my friends, and then relax and enjoy your turkey-induced drowsiness.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

-Oswald

Oswald Is Back In The Kitchen!

To all of my followers, I must apologize for my recent absence in the kitchen.  There has been an awful lot of upheaval in the house over the last month so I haven’t been doing much recipe development.

My Butler has also been very distracted recently.  After The Rupert passed away, The Butler did not perform her duties to her usual standards.  She was quite forlorn and walked around crying a lot, so I thought it a crass to ask her to help me in the kitchen when she was obviously quite upset.  Don’t get me wrong, I miss The Rupert sometimes, as I was actually becoming tolerant of him by the time he died.  I just didn’t think he warranted a two week mourning period, but I let Butler work though her grief, as it seemed the right thing to do.

I was wrong.  I should have nipped the mourning in the bud and made life all about me again.  I missed my window to convince her that I should remain the only dog in the house, and she went out and did something terrible.

She brought home another puppy!

She didn’t consult me, she didn’t ask my opinion, and I certainly would not have allowed it if she had asked me directly.  This puppy is a monster.  She is cute and bouncy and a GIRL so I can’t be very mean to her.  She’s taken over my dog bed, she runs though the house, and she jumps on my head while I’m trying to relax on the couch.  Not to mention, she chews my bones!  I don’t generally chew my bones, they are honestly more for show, but they are still my bones and no one else should touch them.  The puppy comes on all of my walks and the Butler insists on “teaching” her things while we are out and about so it takes longer for me to get to my preferred sniff spots.  She also tries to chew my leash, which is very distracting when I am focused on my patrolling.    At least Rupert knew the rules.

Needless to say, I have been very stressed out this week, so I finally cracked and decided it was time for some baking.  This week called for full blown comfort food for me.  I didn’t have a plan when I started mixing, but I liked how the results turned out.

Oswald’s Comfort Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour (whole grain)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2- 1 cup chicken stock
  • shredded cheddar cheese (as much as you want)
  • bacon (as much as you want)
  • bacon grease (as much as you want)
  • anything else you want (I actually added some leftover mashed potatoes into the mix…)

Directions:

Once I had the flour as my base I just began adding all of my favorite things into the bowl. I love cheesy biscuits so I started with that, and then there was some leftover bacon from breakfast so I crumbled that up and mixed it in.  Then I decided to melt down some bacon grease and add that too, because, well, there can never be too much bacon.

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The mashed potatoes were an after thought but were also a fun addition.  I added the egg and mixed that in and the just used enough chicken stock to get it to a dough consistency.

Once everything was mixed, I asked Butler to roll them into small little balls, as I couldn’t be bothered to pull out the rolling pin and bone-shaped cookie cutters today.  Then I baked them at 350 F for about 15-20 minutes, or until they seemed to be cooked all the way through.

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They turned out really well, and will certainly help to ease my soul in this time of distress.  Unfortunately, Butler insists on sharing my creation with the Monster Puppy that is ruining my life, but I will be sure to settle down with a bowl of them this evening once Puppy is in her crate.

Has anyone else out there ever had a puppy invade their life?  I am also open to suggestions for framing her for certain household crimes in an attempt to have her removed.  Unfortunately, she seems to have seen through my recent attempts (trying to convince her to chew shoes) so I fear I must think of something more cunning.  I will keep you all posted.

-Oswald

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Pumpkin Biscuits- A Perfect Fall Treat

Today’s recipe is a fun, seasonal recipe that also serves to relieve upset stomachs.  I’m a lucky dog and am blessed with a pretty strong stomach, but sometimes I do indulge in picnic remains that I find on the levee or eat one too many rib bones while at a neighborhood party.  From now on, if I have days where I may have overindulged, I will definitely be baking a batch of these soothing biscuits.  These biscuits will also come in handy for the puppy, as he hasn’t yet developed a discerning pallet and will pretty much eat anything.

Now, I will say that I cannot take any credit for this recipe as I did not make it up and I also didn’t discover it by myself.  This recipe was actually sent to me by my feline-in-law Penny.  I’m usually not a fan of cats, and frankly I often find them quite condescending, but Penny (named after the James Bond character Moneypenny!) seems to be one of the good ones.  I’m not sure if Penny is taking an interest in the culinary arts or if she has just picked up on her butler’s Pinterest habit, but either way I am thankful that she passed this recipe on to me.

So, head over to Simmer Til Done and take a look at the recipe for Cleo’s Pumpkin Dog Biscuits.  I’ll be making a batch this week to celebrate the beginning of fall.

Enjoy!

Oswald

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Potato-Bacon Wafers- Grain Free

Things have been a little slow in the kitchen this week for a few reasons.  1. The Butler hasn’t been feeling well or cooking much, so she hasn’t been a good source of inspiration for me.  2. After a slight cold front last week, the weather has become hot and humid again, and consequently the last thing I want to do is stand over a hot stove.  3.  The Weasel (*editor’s note: Weasel = Rupert in Oswald speak) has taken an interest in my bone stash and therefore most of my time this week has been spent guarding my collection intently.

Ohhh a bone!

Ohhh a bone!

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“Back up off my bones…”

Finally this morning Butler took the Weasel for a long run which gave me the opportunity for some serious pondering.

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Ponder… ponder…

I’ve been trying to formulate a new kind of biscuit that uses little to no flour in the recipe.  I’m not a big fan of grains, myself, as they can make me itchy, but they also take away from the taste of the other ingredients.  I knew I wanted to make a biscuit with sweet potatoes as the base, but I couldn’t think of what to pair the sweet potato with.  Then it hit me- BACON!

I made some small batches to experiment at first, and after a few attempts I’m quite pleased with how they turned out.  They are softer then regular biscuits or wafers, but still delicious! I present to you…

Potato-Bacon Wafers

Ingredients:

  • 1 sweet potato
  • Bacon (as much as you, but want- 6-8 slices works)
  • 1 egg

Directions:

  1. Cook and mash the sweet potatoes
  2. Cook the bacon and either crumble into small pieces or chop up in a food processor (as a side note, I’ve realized that putting cooked bacon in the food processor essentially makes bacon sprinkles.  Amazing!)
  3. Whisk the egg and mix together with the sweet potato and bacon sprinkles.
  4. Grease a cookie sheet (I recommend bacon grease) and place a small “dollup” of mixture on the cookie sheet.  Flatten the dollup down and bake on 325 for 20 minutes or so.  The longer you cook them, the crispier they will be.  After 20 minutes they are still a little soft.
  5. If you don’t eat them all in one sitting (and I won’t judge you if you do) then place them in the fridge to keep.

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These are great for a mid-afternoon snack, or you can get your Butler to put them on a fancy platter and pass them around as hors d’oeuvres at your next garden party.

Enjoy!

-Oswald

Lamb Biscuits

Every now and again I find myself in the mood to do some baking, and as I am currently out of homemade biscuits I thought I’d whip up a new batch.  I was going to do my classic Cheese Biscuit recipe (which I will share next week!), but then I remembered a gem that Butler had tucked away in the fridge- lamb drippings!  The Butler made roast lamb chops for the humans last week, but she saved the fat and the drippings and put them in the fridge.  It would seem at this point that she isn’t going to do anything with them, so I decided to steal the opportunity and use them for myself.

Lamb Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup of lamb drippings (you could also use beef drippings, bacon grease, etc.)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2- 3/4 cup of chicken stock – just enough to give you a doughy consistency*

*you can also use water, but chicken stock tastes better

Directions:

  1. Melt the lamb drippings until they are liquid.
  2. Mix flour, drippings, and egg together in a bowl.
  3. Add chicken stock slowly while mixing until the mix is at a cookie dough consistency.
  4. Roll out the dough until it about 1/8 inch thick with a rolling pin, using small amounts of flour to prevent the dough sticking to the pin.
  5. Cut into desired shapes either using a knife or cookie cutter.
  6. Place of greased cookie sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 ° F for 15 minutes, or until biscuits get to desired crispiness.

This is a really simple recipe, but it is very delicious.  It is important to first check that you have the correct ingredients.

Ingredient check

Ingredient check

And to make sure the shapes are cut correctly out of the dough.  As you can see, I like to use various sizes of bone shapes as well as fire hydrants for variety.

Cutting out the dough

Cutting out the dough

And lastly proper spacial arrangement on the cookie sheet is important for maximum cooking efficiency.

Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

Success!  Bon Appetit!

-Oswald

Taters and Giblets

This recipe is another easy recipe, but makes a lovely, rich wet food that is more of a treat than dog food.  Often, my Butler will cook up chicken gizzards for me after she cooks roast chicken for the humans.  However, she came home from the grocery store the other day with a whole pack of frozen chicken gizzards that she thought I might like to use in a recipe.  I decided to pair them with sweet potatoes to make a very favorable dish in anticipation for fall.

Ingredients:

  • A tub of frozen chicken gizzards (about $1.99 a tub)
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes

Directions:

  1. Defrost the gizzards and drain the juice.
  2. Chop up sweet potatoes into small-ish pieces.
  3. Boil the potatoes and gizzards together in a saucepan full of water until potatoes are very soft.
  4. Mash all ingredients (and left over boiling water) with a fork, or blend in a food processor.

It would be possible to substitute beef or chicken liver for the gizzards depending on the taste preferences of your dog.  Whether you use gizzards or liver, just be conscious that this recipe does produce food that is rich, so be careful when feeding to dogs with sensitive stomachs.  Because the food is richer than others, you don’t need to mix as much in with dry food, so a little goes a long way.  So next time you cook a roast, save your giblets and leftover potatoes and make a yummy dish for your four-legged companion.

Enjoy!

-Oswald

P.S. The Butler told me I should wear an apron whilst preparing the food today.  I resisted, but eventually relented on the condition I could wear the apron as a cape.

Oswald Apron