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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Peppermint Bark ~ A Delicious, Winter Snack {tutorial}

Just before Christmas, I was reading the blog Katydid and Kid. She posted directions for how to make homemade Peppermint Bark. {Click the link to see her post.} I was SO excited to find this as I was trying to think up something to make for my family's Christmas party that was quickly approaching and I hadn't a clue what to make. I commented there that I would be making this for my family {and thanks for the idea}. I want to share it here with you too, though. After all, peppermint bark is not specific to any holiday. It's just a yummy treat we should all enjoy {says me}.

Now, get your things together. Here's what you'll need: {These ingredients are taken directly from Katydid and Kid's post with my own notes included and highlighted.}

  • 24 oz. milk chocolate chips 
  • 36 oz. white chocolate chips
    • {basically, 2 bags of each if you're grabbing bags at the grocery store like I was}
  • Peppermint oil or extract
    • {I used peppermint extract. It turned out great!}
  • 2 boxes of candy canes
    • {I had a bunch of small candy canes at home and grabbed one box of large candy canes while at the store. Just be sure you have A LOT of peppermint pieces if you combine like I did.}
  • aluminum foil
  • cooking spray
  • large baking pan (mine was 12"x18")
  • Double boiler (or a 2 bowls that can fit over a pot of simmering water)

Alrighty! Once I had everything together, I lined the baking pan with aluminum foil and sprayed it with cooking spray.

Next, I got my pot of water on the stove top and began heating it to a low boil.

And while I was waiting for the water to boil, I beat up the candy canes into little pieces. Katydid and Kid suggests that this is good for the kiddos to help with and I'm sure she's right. I just really wanted to get some tension out so I did it myself. *sigh* That felt good. LOL

Nice. The water began boiling so I threw the milk chocolate chips into my double boiler and stirred it up until it was creamy and...

melted. YUM!

I then poured the milk chocolate onto the baking sheet, smoothed it with the back of a spoon, and let it set. *Here's a tip. I threw the milk chocolate into the freezer while I melted the white chocolate so I was sure that it was ready for me when I was ready for it. The melting process goes pretty quickly so it's not in the freezer long enough to have to worry about it.*

 Half way there! I washed out my double boiler, dried it, and threw it back on the pot of boiling water to melt the white chocolate. Once it was good and creamy, I added the peppermint extract {I added about 3/4 a cap} and stirred in just half of the peppermint bits.

I grabbed my milk chocolate {that was taken out of the freezer before I mixed in the peppermint extract and candy cane pieces} and spread the white chocolate on top of it. Finally, I sprinkled the second half of the peppermint bits on top of the white chocolate for a yummy finish.


I popped this back into the freezer so it could set. After that, I put it on my kitchen counter, brought it to room temperature and got ready to cut it. {This is the easy, peasy part.} All I had to do was peel the sheet of peppermint bark off the foil, score it with a chef's knife, and break it into pieces. I also had cute baggies to fill with the pieces that I found at Walmart to make it look like a gift {20 for $1!!}.

Honestly, I can tell you that this went over HUGE with my family and it is now my "thing" that I'll make every year to hand out at the Christmas party. The only thing I'm changing? I'm making a double batch next year so I can have more for us at home. It's truly delicious!

{ponder} Perhaps I can make some for us this week "just because". Hmmm....



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