Sunday, January 5, 2014

Project Sunday, Holiday Edition: Peppermint Bark & English Toffee Bark

Hello, lovelies!

I hope you all had an enjoyable and festive holiday season! Happy New Year to you all :) I cannot believe 2013 went by so quickly. It was a whirlwind of a year with many highs and lows. I hope 2014 brings new adventures and opportunities for everyone. I don't have any crazy driving stories for you this year because we finally lucked out with good weather on the days we were driving across the state. I had a great time traveling with Mr J. to see our families for three Christmas celebrations. It was a crazy ten days with lots of miles covered and sugar eaten. Spending quality time with our loved ones is something we treasure, and I am the type of person who LOVES giving gifts. 

Like I did last year, I am sharing the homemade gifts I gave to family and friends for Christmas. (For last year's posts, see here, here, and here.) We've been battling a virus in our household since the 30th, so out of convenience this post will be about the quickest of the gifts I made in December. I warn you, they are both delicious and addicting, hence why I only made them for the holiday season! We brought these treats to every house we visited and they were very well received.

This has to be the easiest treat to whip up. It's faster than any other candy or dessert recipe I have, and you only need three ingredients: dark or milk chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, and candy canes.

Crush 10 to 20 candy canes, depending on your preference. Set aside.

Melt one or two bags of chocolate chips in the microwave in a microwave safe bowl (stir the chips every 30 seconds until completely melted and smooth). Two bags will result in a thicker bottom layer and sturdier pieces of bark.

Pour the chocolate into a baking sheet and use a spatula to create an even layer. Refrigerate until firm.

Melt the white chocolate chips until smooth.  Allow to cool slightly, then pour over the hardened chocolate layer.

Sprinkle the crushed candy canes over the melted white chocolate. Refrigerate until hardened.

Using a butter knife, break up the candy by firmly inserting the knife to create random pieces.

This bark is a little more involved but still easy! You will need a candy thermometer to make the toffee.

Place a baking sheet in the oven at 100 degrees to keep it warm. This helps the toffee spread easily.

In a saucepan, melt 1 cup of butter, 1 cup of granulated sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Cook over medium heat and bring to a boil. Continue boiling and stir quickly and continuously with a wooden spoon.

When the mixture reaches 300 degrees, remove from heat and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. (The liquid should be almond-colored. It takes 5-7 minutes to reach this temperature.)

Pour the toffee onto the warm baking sheet (be careful!). Let cool for about two hours.

Melt one bag of dark chocolate chips (see above). Pour the chocolate over the toffee.

Sprinkle with ground almonds or nut of your choice. Break the toffee bark into pieces.

Store both kinds of bark in airtight containers.

This is our door, Jon Snow, and he wishes you a Happy New Year!

Much love,

This recipe is linked to:
Jam Hands
This Gal Cooks
Skip to My Lou

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