Peppermint Bark Recipe
After testing so many different recipes of multi-layered peppermint bark and developing my own recipes, I’ve decided that the following is the easiest and most fool proof. This is adapted just slightly from Food Network magazine. It’s interesting that out of all the recipes I’ve made for bark throughout the years, using different melting methods and chocolates, that I’ve come back to my original way of teaching students how to make the bark by tempering the chocolate.
The problem with bark is it may shatter or separate when you break/cut it apart. By melting the chocolate slowly and using the tempering method below, shattering or separating is minimum, if at all. The key is letting it set up at room temperature. I’m giving you very detailed instructions. BTW check out the photo – can you tell which is mine and which is William Sonoma’s?!
Use high quality, real semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate, not “chocolate flavored”. (William Sonoma uses a custom blended Guittard). I use Kroger brand semi sweet and white chocolate morsels.
Use high quality white chocolate. Read label – the first 2 ingredients should be sugar and cocoa butter.
Candy canes/disks should be flavored with real peppermint extract, not artificially flavored. (William Sonoma has theirs made specially for them).
Peppermint Bark Recipe:
2 cups real semi sweet chocolate chips or bars (chop bars if using), divided into 1-1/4 and 3/4 cup measures
1-1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract, divided into 1 and 1/2 teaspoon measures
2-3/4 cups white chocolate chips or bars, chopped, divided into 2-1/4 and 1/2 cup measures
1/4 cup crushed peppermint candy
Line a cookie sheet with 1 piece of foil, about 10×12”. Or do the same in a 9×13 pan.
Put 1-1/4 cups semi sweet chocolate in heat proof bowl. Set over a saucepan that has 1” of steaming water, making sure bowl does not touch water. (This is a makeshift double boiler). Heat should be turned to low. Stir until chocolate is just about melted, then remove bowl from pan and stir in rest of semisweet chocolate, a bit at a time, until all is melted. If necessary, put the bowl back on the pan to help melt. If there’s any moisture on the bottom of the bowl, wipe it dry.
Stir in 1 teaspoon of the extract and pour onto foil, spreading in even layer. Tap pan on counter to remove any air bubbles.
Let sit at room temperature until just about set, anywhere from 10-20 minutes. When you press your finger into the chocolate a very slight indentation will remain.
Put 2-1/4 cups white chocolate in clean bowl and repeat process for melting, stirring in remaining 1/2 cup chips after removing bowl from pan.
Stir in 1/2 teaspoon extract.
Pour over chocolate layer and spread.
Sprinkle with candy. If necessary, gently press into chocolate.
Let set at room temperature until completely firm. Peel bark off foil and break into pieces.
Store, covered, at room temperature up to a month or so. If it’s extremely warm in the house, store, covered, in frig and bring to room temperature before eating.
Tip from Rita’s kitchen:
If you want to cut the bark, you’ll need to do it before it gets completely hard, but still hard enough so that the layers don’t “bleed” when you slice through with a knife.