I have this fantasy about moving to a quiet resort town and opening a Bed & Breakfast in a nineteenth century manor home. It comes to me every time I bake something sweet. As I’m watching the beaters do their mixing gig in the Kitchen Aid, my mind goes to a vision of a fully equipped kitchen with double ovens and ample counter space. A window is open over the farmhouse sink, checkered curtains moving softly in the seaside breeze. It’s a nice dream, this.
In the parlor, I’ll have a buffet set out with thick ham slices on a platter next to a bowl of homemade potato salad. Sliced vegetables from the backyard garden are displayed in a colorful pattern with a cruet of rosemary-infused vinaigrette as their centerpiece. A lovely white cake with raspberry preserves slathered between the tiers awaits the guests to enjoy with their afternoon tea.
In real life, I’m snapped back as I pull my masterpiece from the oven, anxious to see the results of my labor. It’s supposed to be a 12 x 9 pan of lemon and blueberry deliciousness. It’s not. I swear I followed the recipe. I think. I blame the oven.
Sure, this is on me. Whatever celestial recipe was used to make me, I wasn’t given the baked goods gene. Just not my thing. And so with that, goes my B&B dream.
I admit I can’t make guest-worthy cakes, but fortunately my dogs are not so choosy about how their noms are plated. So, with lowered standards, I have the confidence to make a nutritious treat for my favorite good dogs.
I did a little research, messed around, bought more cookie cutters, and came up with this recipe.
This Sweet Potato & Banana dog treat is a whole foods recipe with only five ingredients and no nasty preservatives to muck things up. I’m super picky about what my dogs eat, which they have absolutely no appreciation for. I wish I had a brownie for every time I finger swiped something like tree bark, a pinecone, or a flailing cicada out a retriever maw. I had a dog once that ate mud like it was a bowl of kibble. True story.
I put this recipe on the Easy scale, with a couple of watch outs for those who share my lack of baking skills. When everything is mixed together, it’s rather sticky at first. So before you have this all over your hands, be prepared by having about ½ cup of flour standing by to add to the dough as you knead it. Get it? Need it? Ugh, nevermind.
Oh, and this is important … put a good coating of flour on your cutting board before you flatten the dough. A friend of mine didn’t do this and had to start over when the cut outs wouldn’t come off the cutting board. In fact, she managed about exactly fifteen tiny gingerbread men when she flipped her wig and got out the pizza cutter to just make a bunch of square cookies instead. It’s ok, she’s not much of a baker.
You have a couple of options for the mashed sweet potato. If you have leftover baked sweet potatoes from dinner, use one of those. Easy peasy, swee’ tater easy. Otherwise, just pop a raw sweet potato in the microwave (poke a couple times with a fork to break the skin) for about 5-7 minutes, until it’s soft enough to mash.
And there ya go. One hundred percent approved by the food critics at Sword House. My taste testers are begging me for new recipes.
What do you think? We haven’t tried anything to avoid wheat allergies yet, so that could be next. Any special requests for our test kitchen?
Sweet Potato & Banana Dog Treats
Dog tested and approved! Five ingredient dog treats
- 1/2 Cup banana, mashed (1 medium banana)
- 1/2 Cup cooked sweet potato, mashed
- 1 1/2 Cup whole wheat flour, plus about 1/2 Cup for kneading dough
- 1/4 Cup instant oats
- 2 eggs Also: parchment paper, small cookie cutters or pizza cutter
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F
- Mash banana and sweet potato in a bowl and mix well.
- Lightly whisk the eggs in a small bowl or measuring cup
- In separate bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, oats and add the whisked eggs.
- Combine the banana and sweet potato mixture with the flour mixture and stir until all ingredients are combined.
- Sprinkle some of the reserved wheat flour on a cutting board and knead the dough. Add flour as you go until the dough is not sticky and can be flattened to about a quarter inch thick.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 1 x 1 inch squares and place on the lined cookie sheet. Alternatively, you can use cookie cutters about 1” in width/height, if you have the patience for such a task.
- Bake at 300 degrees F for 40-45 minutes.
- When done baking, turn off the oven and let them cool completely in the oven, leaving the oven door ajar. This will help remove any remaining moisture in the treats. Store at room temperature in an air-tight container. If storing longer than four or five days, keep in fridge or freezer.