This year we will have a bit of extra time on our hands so we've decided to make a few batches of chocolate bark to give away to friends and family. You can too! Just follow this quick and easy process.
WHAT IS THE BEST KIND OF CHOCOLATE TO USE FOR BARK?
Many recipes on the internet may suggest using regular chocolate chips as the primary ingredient, but this is a misguidance for good chocolate bark.
Although chocolate chips are affordable and readily available, using them can be problematic because of the additives. They are manufactured to hold their shape, so they aren’t ideal for melting. Look for higher quality chocolate with a few simple ingredients on the label.
TOPPINGS FOR CHOCOLATE BARK
The possibilities are truly endless, but here are some popular choices. Be creative as you want because, really, what doesn’t taste good with chocolate??
10-12 ounce 50% milk chocolate - 70% dark chocolate, depending on your preference
+ toppings of your choice
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place two-thirds of the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high in 15-30 seconds intervals, stirring each time, until chips are completely melted. This will take about 2 minutes total, but watch carefully the last 45 seconds.
Add the remaining one-third of chocolate and stir to combine and melt. Continue to stir until all the chocolate is melted, smooth, and glossy. Don't be tempted to put it back in the microwave to finish melting added chocolate. Let it sit a minute and stir again. It will eventually melt from the residual heat.
The benefit of "tempering" chocolate in this way is to give it shiny sheen. Chocolate that isn’t melted properly will be dull looking, streaky, or grainy. It will also be firm, break off with a snap, and hold it’s shape.
Pour melted chocolate on prepared baking sheet. Use an offset spatula to spread chocolate to about 1/4" thick. Immediately sprinkle on desired toppings. Allow chocolate to set and harden on counter. Do not break into pieces until chocolate is completely set, about 2-3 hours.
Once the chocolate is set completely and broke into pieces, store in an airtight container, or separate gift packages, in a cool, dry place, ideally less than 70ºF/21ºC. Properly tempered chocolate will keep for several weeks and doesn't need to be refrigerated. If you have to store it in the refrigerator, make sure it's in a sealed container to prevent moisture, smells, or condensation spoiling the chocolate.
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