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Visions of sugarplums: Easy peppermint bark

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Talk about a blitz recipe, this one for peppermint bark takes about 5 minutes of prep time. It's also nearly foolproof, and it's suitable for older children to prepare.

The only two ingredients are white candy coating and crushed peppermint candy. The latter can either be prepared by crushing candy canes or peppermint disk candies using a food processor, or by purchasing a bulk container of the crushed candy. This is available at local GFS Marketplace stores, and the 10 ounce container is just perfect for making 1 pound of bark.

Peppermint Bark
1 lb. white candy coating
1 10 oz container crushed peppermint candy, or 1 1/2 c. crushed peppermint candies

Line baking sheet with waxed paper. Break candy coating into smaller squares, place in large microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Stir, then microwave again for 30 seconds. Continue to heat in the microwave in 30-second sessions, stirring between intervals, until all of the candy coating is melted.

Stir in crushed peppermint candy. Pour onto baking sheet and spread evenly over the surface. Chill 10 minutes in refrigerator until solid.

Separate into smaller pieces; store away from heat. Makes 1 pound.

Tips

  • Candy coating contains cocoa butter, so keep all utensils dry. Even a drop of water will cause the coating to crystallize. Also, avoid using extracts to add additional flavor; if more peppermint flavor is desired, use a few drops of peppermint essential oil.
  • Use your imagination with inclusions. For example, instead of peppermint candy, add dried cranberries and pecans, salted cashews, slivered almonds or raisins and walnut pieces.
  • If you have a collection of holiday themed cookie cutters, lightly spray them with nonstick cooking spray and lay cutting-side up on the waxed paper. Pour bark into the cookie cutter and chill as above. When hard, press lightly to remove from mold.

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