Peppermint bark, a classic American crunchy Christmas treat, is an amalgamation of white chocolate and peppermint candy canes. Semisweet chocolates and dark chocolates can also be used in the preparation of peppermint barks. The chocolate is melted or tempered prior to being used in this candy dessert. Chocolate chips can also be used in place of chocolate; however, in such a case the chips need not be tempered, but simply melted. Chocolates can also be substituted with un-tempered chocolate or candy coating, in order to prepare the candy speedily.
The dessert candies can simply be prepared by combining together crushed peppermint candy canes and melted white chocolate, and refrigerating the mix, prior to breaking it into several pieces. However, the layered version is the most popular and preferred one, prepared by layering melted dark chocolate and white chocolate over crushed peppermint candy canes. Peppermint bark can be cut in the form of cookies or cupcakes, or broken into uneven pieces and served as a Christmas gift, after being packed into tins.
The basic peppermint bark recipe suggests combining crushed peppermint candy canes with melted white chocolate and peppermint flavorings (optional), and then pouring the mix on the cookie tray lined with waxed paper or aluminum foil. Already reserved crushed peppermint candy canes are sprinkled on top, and thereafter the tray is placed in the refrigerator for around an hour or so until the peppermint bark is firm. It is then broken into uneven small pieces before being consumed.
Another peppermint bark recipe suggesting the use of both dark chocolate and white chocolate is quite popular. The recipe says spreading melted dark chocolate over crushed peppermint candy canes spread onto an aluminum foil lined cookie tray; refrigerating the peppermint bark until firm; pouring over a mix of crushed candy canes and melted white chocolate over dark chocolate; sprinkling already reserved crushed candy canes on top, and pressing them lightly so that they stick to melted chocolate. The peppermint bark is refrigerated for around half an hour before breaking it into uneven pieces.
Un-tempered chocolate based peppermint bark tends to melt easily, and should therefore be stored in refrigerator.
Peppermint bark is used popularly to make a cheesecake. White chocolate based cheesecake is swirled with uneven chunks of peppermint and chocolate flavored bark. White chocolate mousse is used as the topping and the cake is finished after garnishing it with peppermint.
Peppermint and chocolate flavored bark is high in calories, with one oz of the bark providing around 140 calories obtained from 8 g of fat, 18 g of carbohydrates, and 1 g of protein. Among carbohydrates, 17 g comprise sugar. Among fats, 5 g consist of saturated fats, which are considered to be bad fats. Due to high fat and sugar content in the peppermint bark, it is strongly suggested to put a limit the intake of the candy.