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Did I mention that I am NOT a baker? Every year I try though, and this year shall be no different! My husband always makes fun of me because I come up with grand plans, and think they are going to be WAY more fun than they actually turn out to be. Today, “Christmas Baking Day”, was one of those days…

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(Wish I could take credit for this lovely photo, but it’s from Cathie Filian!)

 

We’ll start off with a great recipe for Peppermint Bark and end in a seriously messy kitchen. Read on if you dare…it’s not for the faint of heart, nor those on weight watchers…uhem, like myself.

Ingredients: (Looks harmless enough right?)

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  • 24 ounces white chocolate chips
  • 24 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 package Bob’s Candy Canes
  • Cookie Sheet lined with foil
  • Cooking Spray

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with tin foil and spray with Pam.

2. Pour the semisweet chocolate chips onto the pan and spread them around evenly. Bake for a couple of minutes until they look barely melted. Then take the pan out of the oven and spread the chips around with a spatula. So far so good. Put the pan in the refrigerator to cool and harden for about 30 minutes. (Please, I beg you, wait 30 minutes!)

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3. Open the candy canes, put them on a cookie sheet under a dishtowel and crush them with a hammer. Sort the larger candy cane pieces from the candy cane dust. (Or in my case you’ll use the bare counter, and silently curse yourself for tossing out your last cookie sheet because you burnt ribs on it and couldn’t get it clean, while fervently dodging flying candy cane shards.)

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4. Melt the white chocolate chips in a double boiler, stirring constantly. (If the term ‘double-boiler’ causes you to panic like it does me, you can do it in the microwave. I did it for about 5.5 minutes on high, stirring half way in between. Make sure chips are well melted, or they will be hard to spread over the chocolate.) Stir in 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract and the candy cane dust. Mix until smooth.

5. Pour over the top of your COOLED semisweet chocolate layer. (I stress cooled, because I’m not great at following directions and didn’t let mine cool completely, so instead we have a more…um…swirly peppermint bark, but I suspect it tastes just as yummy, not cause’ I licked the bowl or anything…I’m just sayin’…)

6. Sprinkle top with candy cane pieces and press them down lightly so that they stick.

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7. Refrigerate for several hours, then break the bark into chunks.

8. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Remove from fridge about 5 minutes before serving so no one breaks a tooth!

9. Convince your 5 year old to sweep up all the little shards of candy cane before your Teeny Tiny Tot licks them all up from the floor.

10. Steal/borrow image from someone’s blog(make sure to give them credit!) because mine look like…well…like I made them! (I’m sure yours will be much better because you will adhere to step number 5, unlike myself)

11. Shrug as though you don’t know what he’s talking about when your husband comes home and asks why the baby smells like peppermint.

So, all that behind us now, I have to say, I will make these again, I’ll have a cookie sheet ready, and I’ll wait 30 minutes for the chocolate base layer to harden. Minus all the mishaps, this recipe was fairly easy.

So here they are in all their glory “Swirly Peppermint Bark Ala Erica”. And by the way…they do taste just as good!

 

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In all seriousness, don’t be discouraged by my unfortunate situation today, we had fun, and they taste great. Hopefully next year, they’ll be just as pretty as the pro’s. And look at it this way, at least I didn’t try to make delicately decorated snowflake sugar cookies like I did last year. And as a fellow blogger reminded me, it’s not the destination, it’s the journey that we are to enjoy!

Peppermint Bark Recipe
Recipe Type: Dessert
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 45 mins
Total time: 1 hour
Serves: 12-15
A wonderfully easy and delicious peppermint bark recipe, and a great addition to your holidays!
Ingredients
  • 24 ounces white chocolate chips
  • 24 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 package Bob’s Candy Canes
  • Cookie Sheet lined with foil
  • Cooking Spray
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with tin foil and spray with Pam.
  2. Pour the semisweet chocolate chips onto the pan and spread them around evenly. Bake for a couple of minutes until they look barely melted. Then take the pan out of the oven and spread the chips around with a spatula. So far so good. Put the pan in the refrigerator to cool and harden for about 30 minutes. (Please, I beg you, wait 30 minutes!)
  3. Open the candy canes, put them on a cookie sheet under a dishtowel and crush them with a hammer. Sort the larger candy cane pieces from the candy cane dust.
  4. Melt the white chocolate chips in a double boiler, stirring constantly. (If the term ‘double-boiler’ causes you to panic like it does me, you can do it in the microwave. I did it for about 5.5 minutes on high, stirring half way in between. Make sure chips are well melted, or they will be hard to spread over the chocolate.) Stir in 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract and the candy cane dust. Mix until smooth.
  5. Pour over the top of your COOLED semisweet chocolate layer. (I stress cooled, because I’m not great at following directions and didn’t let mine cool completely, so instead we have a more…um…swirly peppermint bark, but I suspect it tastes just as yummy, not cause’ I licked the bowl or anything…I’m just sayin’…)
  6. Sprinkle top with candy cane pieces and press them down lightly so that they stick.
  7. Refrigerate for several hours, then break the bark into chunks.
  8. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Remove from fridge about 5 minutes before serving so no one breaks a tooth!

19 Comments

  1. Hi Erica,
    I found your blog two days ago and have not been able to stay away, everything yo do is amazing and inspiring, and I love the way you write, you are truly gifted!

    About this recipe and the candy cane mess, have you thought about putting them in a plastic bag (like a ziploc) and then covering the bag with the towel so the bag doesn’t rip with the hammer, this way you will contain the mess in and you don’t have to wash another cookie sheet, I don’t if it would work with the candy cane but this is how my mom always mashed her sugar cane to make empanadas (Mexican pastry) I would give it a try 🙂

    Thank you again for opening your life to enrich ours!

    Vanessa
    1. Finally got our peppermint bark made on Jan. 2. We only had the small individually wrapped candy canes and that worked great. I left the canes in the bags and that contained the mess. Cutting and dumping the bags of powder and candy canes is a great contribution by the youngest of helpers. Thanks for the recipe. It will be a favorite for years to come.

      Stacy
  2. My friends and I made a whole bunch of candy and dipped stuff the other day and figured out another strategy for the peppermint bark that is a trillion (TRILLION!) times easier, although not as fun for the kids. 🙂 Put the candy canes in the blender. For real. They turn to POWDER in less than five seconds. Of course, I don’t like big hunks of candy cane in my bark. I just like the taste of it.
    I made another kind of bark yesterday too. I used almond bark instead of chocolate chips and it melts very smoothly. (You can add crisco to it to thin it out if you need to.) I did the layer of chocolate on the bottom and just let it harden in a cool room in the house. Then I melted the vanilla bark and added oreo cookie crumbs. (MUCH easier than the peppermints!) Lastly I poured the vanilla/oreo on top of the chocolate layer and it’s absolutely delicious. Plus the kids could use a rolling pin on the oreos instead of a hammer on the candy canes. 🙂
    Sorry this was such a long comment. Keep up the great blog!

  3. WE LOVE PEPPERMINT BARK!!!
    However, I do have some suggestions of a bit easier way to do it that I learned from a friend…
    First you take all of your ingredients. I made it out of peppermints instead of candy canes. I put it over a work surface that was easy to sweep up ( 😉 ) and then had the boys whack it with a rolling pin until I took over when the bag started ripping- oh my. I personally like little chunks of peppermint, but not HUGE ones. Just make it your desired size! (One nice thing about this recipe 🙂 ) Then I took a sheet of parchment and spread it on a cookie pan, melting the chocolate IN THE MICROWAVE until thoroughly melted and warm to the touch (not lick of course 🙂 ) Then I swirled the chocolate a bit (I used those green and brown chocolate chips and it made an amazing bark!) and then I sprinkled the peppermints over. Placing the pan in the fridge and letting it cool for about half an hour or so (or until nicely frozen) then breaking the chocolate into pieces made a fabulous treat!
    Sorry for the long comment-but I hope that you can use this recipe! 🙂

    Stella

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