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Recipe tweak help

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hi.
I have a recipe that at one point was oat bran muffins, but has been tweaked a few times. I use this recipe to help give the dogs thier pills twice a day, give them fiber to be regular and to curb thier hunger because we feed them a lean diet. I also eat them myself with yogurt, they are not bad!

5 cups oatmeal
4 cups oat bran
1 cup brown sugar
3 cups water
1/2 cup pure pumpkin
1/2 cup corn syrup
10 egg whites
4 tablespoons baking poweder

I mix it all in a kitchen aid mixer, add the baking powder last and mix some more. Then pour on greased cookie sheet, I think its a one inch depth. I bake at 350 F for 45 minutes. When done I flip the cookie sheet upside down on cutting board.

If anyone could help me with two things I would appreciate it.

I would like to know how to cut these into 1"x1" cubes. I tried a pizza cutter, than the end of a flat spatula. I get mixed results with this. The goal is to not have them crumble.

I would also like to know how I can make the final product stronger when done, in other words not crumble. I have to stay with the ingredients that I already am usiing. Add more egg whites? Any thoughts?

Thanks, I like this site
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post #2 of 6
The lack of fat is the reason your product is so crumbly. If you absolutely refuse egg yolk for some reason try a bit of healthy, neutral flavored oil. It also needs a bit of flour of some kind...lots of delicious ground grains on the market. What you have so far is just a step down from granola.
post #3 of 6
Don't add more egg whites; all that will do is dry it further.
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
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"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
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post #4 of 6
They're gonna be crumbly w/out any flour, unfortunately. You might try cutting the corn syrup a little.

Other ideas for cutting - try scoring them before you bake them. Have you tried using cut out forms, like a dog bone or biscuit cutter, before they're baked?
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post #5 of 6
You could try cooking the oatmeal first. I suggest water to oats ratio of 2:1. Then, adjust the water in the recipe if necessary. Also, as pointed out, you do need some fat. A good vegetable oil would work. Is there some reason you're using only the egg whites, instead of the whole eggs? As marmalady pointed out, the addition of some flour would also help. Whole wheat would be good. Also, they wouldn't have to be cut if you drop them onto the sheet like cookies, using a small scoop. I have one that's only about an inch diameter. This would brown & crisp all the edges, so less crumbling.
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post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for the good suggestions. I would like to avoid flour for now. Our dogs do not have alergies that I know of now, but they could develope them I imagine. I had a labrador once that had severe allergy problems, so I try to be careful about the ingredients I am adding.
I would love to remove as many ingriedents from this recipe as possible yet still have a tough enough form to put the pill in and have it not crumble. Sometimes I will toss one to a dog, he will miss and it will bounce off his nose accress the room, the muffin shatters all over and then I have to crawl around looking for the pill on the floor.

Based on the suggestions, I will get rid of the corn syrup and replace with the same amount of olive oil (1/2 cup). Will that be enough?

I wonder if I could remove the brown sugar? What would that do other than make it taste bland?

I also think I can remove the baking powder, I dont think its needed.

The egg whites are for structure and the whites only for the dogs health. I dont know how many eggs whites I should use but based on suggestions here I will reduce them down to maybe 5 egg whites instead of 10? I would omit them entirely if I could get it all to hold together.

Making them individually by using a scoop is a good idea, but too time consuming and not uniform enough. My goal is to make these as quickly and cheaply as possibly while using pure ingredients and as few of them as possible. To me, the dogs just need the oat bran and pumpkin. The oatmeal is there as oat bran gets kind of expensive so I use it as filler.

Scoring the top before cooking is something I will definitely try out. Cooking the oatmeal before hand, then mixing the other ingredients is a great idea, would that toughen it up?
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