Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Copycat Williams-Sonoma Peppermint Bark

Williams-Sonoma's Peppermint Bark.  If you've tasted it, then you know it's magical.  If you haven't tasted it, then you really need to.  This bark screams the holidays and it is so darn delicious and addictive.  For years Williams-Sonoma has been selling their peppermint bark for upwards of $30-40 per pound and people have been willing to pay good money for it because it is so darn delicious.  No need to pay big bucks any longer.  You can totally make this stuff at home.

This copycat recipe is spot on.  The real deal.  Worth it's weight in gold.  I'm not kidding.  Peppermint and chocolate are all the rage this season and I think you should seriously make this.  Ditch the cookies.  Give your oven a break.  Make this for yourself.  Eat the whole batch.  Then again, it's the season of giving.  Make another batch.  Wrap it up.  Gift it.  It definitely looks pretty all wrapped up with a bow.  People will love it.

Just please promise to use good chocolate.

Copycat Williams Sonoma Peppermint Bark
Adapted from Food Network 
Makes about 2 pounds
Active Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

12 ounces good-quality semisweet chocolate, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces*
1 pound good-quality white chocolate, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces*
1-1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract
3 candy canes or 12 round hard peppermint candies, crushed

*Note: To do this recipe right you really need to buy good chocolate.  Don't buy chocolate chips because they will not yield the same results.  Buy good quality chocolate in bar form.  I used 3 (4 oz.) bars of Ghirardelli semisweet chocolate and 4 (4 oz.) bars of Ghirardelli white chocolate. 

Line a 9x13 inch baking dish with aluminum foil, shiny-side up; smooth out any wrinkles.  Heat 1 inch of water in a saucepan over low heat until steaming.

Put all but 3/4 cup of the semisweet chocolate in a heatproof bowl.  Set the bowl over the saucepan of steaming water (do not let the bowl touch the water) and stir until one-third of the chocolate is melted.  Remove the bowl from the saucepan; keep the steaming water over low heat.  Gradually stir the reserved 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate into the bowl, a few pieces at a time, until all of the chocolate is melted.  Return the bowl to the saucepan, 5 to 10 seconds at a time, to help melt the chocolate, if needed.  Do not rush this step:  it should take about 10 minutes to melt the chocolate.

Wipe off any moisture from the bottom of the bowl.  Stir in 3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract into the chocolate, then quickly pour into the prepared baking dish and spread in an even layer.  Firmly tap the dish against the counter to remove any air  bubbles.  Set aside at room temperature until almost set, about 10 minutes.  (Mine took a little longer to set.  I ended up putting it in the fridge for just a few minutes).

Meanwhile, put all but 1 cup of the white chocolate in a large heatproof bowl and repeat the melting process over the steaming water; dry the bottom of the bowl.  Stir in the remaining 3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract; pour over the semisweet chocolate and spread in an even layer.  Sprinkle immediately with the crushed candy canes, gently pressing them into the white chocolate.   Set aside at room temperature until firm, about 1 hour.  Lift the bark out of the pan using the foil and break into pieces, or simply lift the bark out and cut into squares (this is what Williams-Sonoma does).  Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

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