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Chopped (dog edition)

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I knew I've been watching too much Chopped when I found myself talking to my dogs when I was preparing their supper:

"Tonight I am making for you Freshpet Select with chicken, vegetable and rice served over a bed of USDA choice shredded roast beef drizzled with natural beef juices and topped by a sprinkle of yellow cheddar cheese."

Comments

( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
nodressrehersal
Apr. 20th, 2013 10:37 pm (UTC)
Practically no such thing as too much Chopped - I mean, look at how it elevated and enhanced the whole "feeding the dogs" experience...for you AND for them, I'm quite sure.
patrick_vecchio
Apr. 20th, 2013 10:41 pm (UTC)
They cleaned their plates, and we know how picky the judges are about what they eat. Lola thought the dish needed some acid, though, to balance the richness of the beef juice.
nodressrehersal
Apr. 20th, 2013 10:43 pm (UTC)
Well, as long as you included all the basket ingredients, I think you can safely move on to the next meal.
patrick_vecchio
Apr. 20th, 2013 10:46 pm (UTC)
Actually (and this is true), I had diced some turkey breast for them, but I thought the beef and turkey would be too rich, so I didn't include it. But the judges liked the dish so well that they let me move on to the dessert round.
callioperato
Apr. 21st, 2013 12:18 am (UTC)
You just didn't do enough with the cheese. It seemed like an afterthought. I would have liked to have seen you make a sorbet with it.

Yeah... I watch too much Chopped, too.
patrick_vecchio
Apr. 21st, 2013 12:38 am (UTC)
Cheese sorbet: yum! I hope this doesn't mean I've been chopped.
callioperato
Apr. 21st, 2013 12:42 am (UTC)
Naw. I'll let you go to the dessert round. The roast beef was delicious and your presentation was beautiful.
patrick_vecchio
Apr. 21st, 2013 01:24 am (UTC)
In all seriousness, Sherry came into the kitchen last night when I was dishing the dog food out and was very impressed by the presentation. I figure feeding the dogs can be a chore, so why not have a little fun with it?

Here's a million-dollar idea, Becky, and I'm passing it along to you: Develop an Animal Planet show that features chefs, just like Chopped, but they're cooking their own recipes for pet food and the judges are dogs. The chefs could bring their own ingredients, but the ingredients would have to be wholesome, nutritious and readily available.

"Here are tonight's judges. First, a saucy little miniature poodle from Olean, N.Y., named Soleil. Next, we have a hot-tempered chihuahua, also from Olean. Please welcome Olivia! (Olivia barks upon introduction) Our third judge is a mischievous shi-tzu from Olean, N.Y. Say hello to Lola. (Lola jumps up and kisses Ted Allen.) Finally, our last judge is also a shi-tzu from Olean: the gentle Gypsy."

You could also do shows with cats, which might be more fun because we know how finicky they are.

Jeez, the more I make the show up, the more I like the idea!
callioperato
Apr. 21st, 2013 01:29 am (UTC)
Brilliant! I would definitely watch that.
cougarfang
Apr. 21st, 2013 12:58 pm (UTC)
Hate to rain on your parade, but it's really freaking hard to home-cook a truly nutritionally complete diet (and don't even get the veterinary nutritionists started on the horrors of "raw food" diets). In an adult animal you can usually get away with some trace deficiencies here and there, at least for a while - and note the "trace", like, seriously some people think they can feed their animals nothing but chicken and rice or browned hamburger meat, and those are the animals that come in with terrible rickets and pathological bone fractures. And with young growing animals like puppies or kittens, you can't ethically leave them deficient in anything at all because they haven't built up the stores that adult animals have.

As a general rule of thumb (or so the nutritionists teach us), look for the AAFCO statement on the animal foods you're purchasing; if it's formulated or tested to meet the nutritional needs of the life stage of the animal you're feeding it to, you're definitely safe. With other foods that don't have that statement, it's caveat emptor - they could be perfectly fine foods, or they could be totally off. And of course, home cooking has no AAFCO statements whatsoever, but if formulated by a boarded veterinary nutrition specialist (not some Joe Schmoe or Mrs. Animal-Lover off the Internet) it'll suffice. This is usually the gold-standard method of choice for people whose pets are allergic to multiple common commercial diet ingredients. I suppose if your show featured a boarded nutritionist talking about how s/he balanced each meal being cooked (tailored towards the particular needs of each individual pet) and the importance of good nutrition for pets in general, it'd be educational *and* entertaining?
patrick_vecchio
Apr. 21st, 2013 03:40 pm (UTC)
Wow. That's no rain at all. With five dogs in my household, and with two kittens scheduled to arrive in June, I'm glad to have all the information. Thank you for taking the time to write such a detailed reply.

patrick_vecchio
Apr. 21st, 2013 03:46 pm (UTC)
I just checked the food we feed our dogs. It has the AAFCO statement on the wrapper. Thanks again.
cougarfang
Apr. 22nd, 2013 02:42 am (UTC)
Good to know! :) Again, it is absolutely possible that there are non-AAFCO-regulated diets out there that are just fine (for those people out there who protest "but my pet has eaten XYZ food all its life and it's never been healthier"), but better safe than sorry IMHO.
(Anonymous)
Apr. 21st, 2013 04:12 pm (UTC)
CHEZ VECCHIO
Le Restaurant Pour Les Chiens
reservation for four please
something near the band
patrick_vecchio
Apr. 21st, 2013 07:50 pm (UTC)
Woof!
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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