Chocolate Peppermint Bark revamped!

*Congratulations to Yolanda, winner of Stephen King’s, “On Writing.” The last book I’m giving away is one of my favorites: “Women Who Run with the Wolves” by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D. The winner will be chosen at random from Writing at the Table’s email subscription list. Sign up now to be eligible. The results will be posted on December 30.

So, as you are probably aware, it’s holiday crunch time. My daughter’s class party is tomorrow, there are teacher cards to write, last minute gifts to buy, and chocolate bark to eat, um, I mean make. Well, both.

peppermint pretzel bark

This is one of the easiest and fastest homemade holiday treats and you probably have all the ingredients in your pantry already. If not, I’m betting you have to go back to the grocery store anyhow. I know I do.

I posted a version of this recipe here a couple years ago, but added some new pics and modified the directions a bit. 

This time I added marshmallows just because. Mini would’ve been easier because cutting them with a knife was a rather sticky and frustrating experience, but the good news is, it is possible.

Chocolate Peppermint Pretzel Bark with Marshmallows

peppermint bark close up

For the full recipe and the rest of this post, go to Writing at the Table, my new blog.

Hope you have a wonderful holiday, whatever you celebrate. We do it all around here.

dec 2014 kids

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Peppermint Pretzel Bark is Insane!

bark 4Insane meaning SUPER easy to make. And to eat. We’ve gone through several batches already. Last night I found my husband pawing through the refrigerator on a search for more. Unfortunately for him I had given the rest away as gifts to Bunky’s teachers for the holidays. He looked at me suspiciously and asked if I was sure there wasn’t any left. As if I had my own secret stash.

Yes, this bark is so good it makes the most rational of men paranoid.

Go right now and check your pantry. Here’s what you’re looking for: chocolate, pretzels, candy canes. Or whatever is crunchy, salty, and sweet. That’s the beauty of this bark. You can personalize it. But you need chocolate. Chips, chunks, bar, whatever. Don’t have any? Go buy it. Now. I’ll wait.

Here is what you need, specifically, for this bark.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of semi sweet chocolate chips, 12 ounces
  • a few handfuls of broken up pretzels (we used Glutino)*
  • 4 regular sized candy canes (Bob’s brand is GF) crushed and separated in 2 piles

The directions look long because I’m chatty, but really, making the bark takes under 10 minutes. (Takes about a half hour to harden.) You can even do it one handed if you need to hold your baby, like I did when Little Guy was fussy.

Directions:

1. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper, set aside.

2. Put chips in a microwave safe bowl. Heat for 30 second intervals. Check and stir after each 30 second increment. Be careful not to overcook! My crazy powerful microwave melts the chips in 1 minute 15 seconds. Sometimes you just need to stir the chips to finish melting. The chocolate should be smooth and shiny. Let sit for 5 minutes.

3. While chocolate is cooling a bit, break up pretzels. Try not to pulverize or you’ll be left with too many useless crumbs. Then put candy canes in a zip lock bag and hit with a wooden spoon or one of those potato masher thingies. It’s a fun way to get out excess aggression.

*I used Glutino because we have an excess now that they changed their formula. Bunky doesn’t like them anymore, and to be honest, neither do I. They are puffier and have less flavor. However, doused in chocolate, they are good.

4. Add all pretzel bits and HALF of the candy cane pieces (2 canes) to the melted chocolate. Stir it up so it’s completely coated. Lick the spoon. I won’t tell.

bark bowl

5. Using a spatula or spoon, pour onto the wax paper. Smooth out a bit. It won’t make as much as you think. If you doubled the recipe it would probably fill up most of a cookie sheet.

6. As a finale, sprinkle the top with the rest of the candy cane pieces. Put the cookie sheet in the fridge until hardened.

bark marble

Looked prettier off the cookie sheet for the pic.

7. Break into pieces using the wax paper to keep your hands from becoming covered in chocolate (there are worse things) and then store in a zip lock bag in the fridge or freezer.

bark plate

Toss a few pieces in cellophane bags and tie with curled red and white ribbons for holiday gifts.

Little Guy is not walking yet, but does enjoy driving his sister’s four-wheeler. He climbs on and off by himself so if I’m not paying attention, he’ll start zooming around solo. Our place is small, so he can’t get far without hitting a wall. The kid is going to LOVE bumper cars.

There's a spot in front for a beer, I mean sippy cup.

There’s a spot in front for a beer, I mean sippy cup.

I’m happy to have shared this post at the Gluten-Free Friday’s link up party hosted by Vegetarian MammaEat.Live.Make, and Gluten Freed R.D., and One Creative Mommy’s Gluten Free Monday link up. Click the links to find more great GF recipes.

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