Tuesday, November 30, 2010

i love bark


I am always on the lookout for child friendly recipes because I love bringing my daughter into the kitchen with me. There is nothing better than watching her little face light up as she experiences a new taste, or seeing the satisfaction that washes over her as she stirs the bowl. We all know how cramped everyone's schedules can get over the holiday season, so I pulled out my no-fuss chocolate bark recipes. They are an incredibly tasty treat, easy to make and ideal for those of you who are busy, busy, busy. For you non-bakers out there, this is the perfect recipe for you! I love candy canes, so there was no question about it-peppermint crunch all the way! On the other hand, my better half  loves nuts and chocolate, so I decided I would make chocolate pecan bark for the hubby. Here's how it all went down in my kitchen...

Peppermint Crunch Bark

Ingredients:
  • 2 pounds white chocolate, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces (went to Bulk Barn and bought white chocolate squares)
  • 8 squares Bakker's White chocolate (can find at local grocery store)
  • 1 1/2 cups round peppermints, crushed up
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint oil (optional, I opted not to because I like to add more crushed peppermint)
Preparation:
  • Line an 11-by-17 inch baking sheet with parchment paper, and set aside.
  • Break up peppermint candy into little pieces. I like to pound them in a plastic bag using a hard object.

  • Melt chocolate. I usually melt mine using the microwave on medium heat, stir every couple of minutes until chocolate is melted. Stir pieces of peppermint into the melted chocolate, set aside 1/2 cup for the topping.
  • Pour mixture onto to cookie sheet that is lined with parchment paper. Spread mixture evenly with spatula or wooden spoon. You can then sprinkle remaining peppermint over the top of mixture.
  • Chill for 1 hour or until hardened. Break into pieces, and serve. You can also store in an airtight container in the fridge up to one week. I love the idea of putting the bark in plastic gift bags, and handing the sweet gifts out for the holidays. 

Chocolate Pecan Bark
Ingredients:
  • 12 squares Bakker's Semi-Sweet chocolate 
  • 12 squares Bakker's White chocolate
  • 1 1/2 cups toasted chopped pecans (keep 1/2 cup for topping) 
Preparation:
  • Follow above preparation, substituting peppermints for pecans.
  • Melt white and semi-sweet chocolate in seperate bowls.
  • Pour onto parchment paper, and then swirl with a knife.
The finished product, Enjoy!
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