All burning questions.
The truth is, I have no idea.
Yes, bark is delicious. And I suppose it's special too. But I think what I like best about bark is that I look like a real pro when I can trot out some lovely looking confection that most people pay small fortunes for. It's a show off thing for me.
There, I said it. I'm a show off. So sue me.
I like that candy barks all rely on really top notch ingredients. The best chocolate. The best dried fruits and nuts. And yes, even the best peppermints. Bark is kind of... naked. It's all right out there for you to see. (Note: If you eat too much bark you will not want to be naked anywhere. Not even in the shower. In the dark. Alone. In the house.)
So while I'm clearly a show off, I am also an ingredient snob. I take it seriously when a recipe calls for really good olive oil, or the freshest _____ you can find. In the case of cooking, what you end up with is a clear result of what you started with. If your ingredients aren't the best, well then whatever you cooked isn't going to taste the best either.
Having now established that I'm a show off who uses the best ingredients, this recipe for peppermint bark will be (unsurprisingly) both delicious and a show stopper. It's easy (because I'm lazy sometimes), but packs a big punch as a gift or a little something to put in a gorgeous silver candy dish for after dinner nibbles either with guests or in front of Scandal (season finale tonight at 10)!!!
Just make sure to use the best chocolate you can find, and don't skimp on the peppermint either. I used Peppermint Crunch, which is so delicious you might actually consider eating it by the spoonful. Since this recipe used only half the jar, there'll be plenty left over should you find that appealing.
Recipe: You Little Tarte's Peppermint Bark
Note: It's definitely worth splurging on your chocolate here. Go for the best you can find. You can actually make as much or as little of this bark (or any bark, for that matter). Just make sure to use equal amounts of dark and white chocolate.
12 ounces dark (bittersweet) chocolate
12 ounces white chocolate
Peppermint Crunch or crushed peppermint candies
Line a 9x13 jellyroll pan with kitchen paper.
Melt the dark chocolate in a double boiler. Once it is all melted, pour the chocolate into the prepared pan and spread into an even layer using an offset spatula. Let the chocolate layer harden for about 2 hours.
Once the dark layer is hard, melt the white chocolate in a double boiler. Pour the melted chocolate over the dark chocolate layer and smooth out into an even layer covering the dark chocolate. Immediately sprinkle the Peppermint Crunch over the white chocolate, lightly pressing it into the candy so that it sticks.
Let the whole assembly harden for a couple of hours and that break apart into jagged pieces of different sizes.