I made these for a friend who's taking care of our kitties while we're away next week. Peppermint bark is a gorgeous concoction generally saved for the holidays (a tradition I aim to change immediately!). It's a layer of milk chocolate, covered in a layer of white chocolate, and sprinkled with crushed candy canes. Genius, the person who invented it!
I had a moment of culinary stupidity while making the bark. After making the bark and fridgerating it, the recipe called for you to "break" it. I promptly fetched a hammer.
Bark isn't like brittle -- it smooshes instead of shattering. A butcher's knife proved much better at cutting it down to size, and didn't separate the layers like the hammer did (-ahem-.) But that just left me with "unuseable" bits to nibble on!
* 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
* 1 cup light brown sugar (not packed!)
* 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
* 1 large egg
* 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 1-3/4 cups all purpose flour
* 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1 1/4 cups peppermint bark, chopped (recipe below)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Cream the butter with the sugars using an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy (approximately 30 seconds.) Beat in the egg and the vanilla extract for another 30 seconds. In a mixing bowl, sift together the dry ingredients and beat into the butter mixture at low speed for about 15 seconds. Stir in the peppermint bark.
Using a 1 ounce scoop or a 2 tablespoon measure, drop cookie dough onto a greased cookie sheet about 3 inches apart. Gently press down on the dough with the back of a spoon to spread out into a 2 inch circle. Bake for about 20 (hs note: 25) minutes or until nicely browned around the edges. Bake a little longer for a crispier cookie (hs note: or if your cookies are a bit bigger).
Makes 2 dozen cookies.
* 9 Candy Canes
* 1 lb. of milk or dark chocolate
* 1 lb. of white chocolate
Line a cookie sheet with wax paper. Unwrap candy canes and place in a large resealable bag. With a rolling pin, smash the canes.
Melt milk/dark chocolate in microwave-safe bowl in microwave, on high for 10-15 second cycles. Stir between heatings. Pour chocolate into cookie sheet and carefully spread to ~1/8" thickness. Refrigerate until firm (~15 minutes).
Repeat with white chocolate (careful! White chocolate burns easily, monitor heat closely.) Spread on top of dark chocolate. Before refrigerating, sprinkle the crushed candy canes on the still-warm white chocolate. Refrigerate for ~15 minutes.
Invert bark in cookie sheet and peel off wax paper. Break into a few large chunks with your hands then chop into 1/2" chunks for cookies. Enjoy!
UPDATE: Having now made bark with both milk and dark, I can safely say that dark is much better. It keeps the bark from being overly sweet, and has a more distinguishable flavor from white chocolate than milk.