The holidays are the time when we pull out all the stops and pan after pan of cookies and candies appear from our kitchens to the delight of our families and friends. We spend weeks getting ready, doughs are made ahead and frozen. Gift packs are wrapped and beribboned. All that is left is to deliver our goodies.
If the thought of making candy gives you chills, here is the perfect recipe to start with! One of the easiest of them all, chocolate bark is simply melted chocolate poured out into a slab, often decorated with nuts, crushed peppermint candies or in this case pomegranate seeds. Then you chill it until the chocolate is re-hardened and break it into pieces.
The hardest thing about this candy is figuring out what flavors you want to add to the chocolate. Today I thought it would be fun to add ginger to the dark chocolate for a touch of spicy heat and then use pomegranate seeds with the white chocolate. Red and white are always festive and perfect for the holidays!
If you want to forego the ginger and pomegranate seeds, you can also use chopped nuts or crushed peppermint candies for a more traditional flavor profile. You can also make a couple of batches for an interesting blending of colors and textures when you serve this or give them as gifts.
Regular white chocolate can be cloyingly sweet, but if you spend a little more money, you can buy a much higher quality chocolate that is remarkable – rich and luscious with just the right amount of sugar. My personal favorite white chocolates are from Valrhona and Guittard. They may not be available in your local stores, but you can always buy them online.
I rushed this a little too fast and didn’t wait for the dark chocolate to set up fully before I added the white chocolate. I wound up with a marbled texture that looks more like milk chocolate instead of the pure white that I was hoping to get. Oh well, it still tastes great!
One thing you want to watch out for when you are breaking this apart – try not to pop the pomegranate seeds. It is wonderful when the explode, making these taste a little like chocolate covered cherries, only better!
We only a few more days until Santa arrives and I can’t wait! Have a fabulous Chocolate Monday!
This recipe is naturally gluten-free!
- 6 oz bittersweet chocolate (about 65 to 70%), coarsely chopped
- 2 tsp coconut oil or vegetable oil, divided
- 2 tbsp finely chopped candied ginger
- 6 oz white chocolate, such as Valrhona brand, chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh pomegranate seeds, divided
- Line a sheet pan with a Silpat or parchment paper and set next to the stove. Place 2 small bowls, an offset spatula and a rubber spatula next to the sheet pan.
- Place the dark chocolate and 1 tsp of the coconut oil in one of the bowls. Microwave in 30 second bursts to melt the chocolate and oil, stirring after each heating until completely melted.
- Stir the ginger into the melted chocolate and pour it onto the center of the Silpat-lined pan and use the spatula to spread it out to about 1/4-inch thick. It will not completely fill the pan. Transfer to the refrigerator for about 15 to 20 minutes to firm up.* When set, remove from the refrigerator.
- Repeat the process with the white chocolate and another 1 tsp of coconut oil. When it is about 2/3 melted, take it out of the microwave. White chocolate has a tendency to scorch, so be sure to stir it often. The residual heat and stirring will finish melting the pieces.
- Add 1/3 of the pomegranate seeds and pour over the top of the dark chocolate layer, using the spatula to spread it out until it completely covers the bottom layer. Sprinkle the remaining pomegranate seeds over the top, press them gently into the soft chocolate with damp hands, and chill in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes or until the chocolate is firm.
- Break into shards and store in an airtight container at cool room temperature for up to 5 days or refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. Place a sheet of waxed paper between each layer to keep the pieces from sticking to each other. You can also place pieces in cellophane bags and tie with ribbon for gifts.
- Yield: about 8 servings
- * If you want a marbled look, chill the dark chocolate about 5 to 10 minutes. It will still be slightly soft. Drizzle the white chocolate mixture over the top and use a spatula to smear the lines across the dark chocolate which will melt slightly and blend with the white chocolate. Sprinkle the remaining pomegranate seeds over the top, gently press them into the chocolate and chill thoroughly.
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