I blame Starbucks.
From the very first peppermint mocha I ordered years ago, I was hooked on the combination of peppermint and chocolate.
I also blame Benny. One day, he arrived at work with a new Starbucks beverage, a white chocolate peppermint mocha. He said it was delicious.
I responded that I didn’t like white chocolate. He merely held out the cup and gave me a look that plainly said, “I dare you.”
He was right. And ever since, I’ve been a sucker for all things chocolate (including white chocolate) and peppermint.
Take peppermint bark, for instance. Some people make it with just white chocolate or just dark. But the best? It uses both. And just like always, if you want a little extra hit of peppermint (no, I’m not adding Schnapps to this one), add a bit of peppermint extract to either chocolate layer. If you’re really feeling dangerous, add it to both.
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
12 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon canola oil, divided
1/4 cup crushed candy canes or peppermints*
Line a baking sheet with parchment, set aside.
Place the crushed candy in a sieve and tap over a small bowl. Set the larger chunks and the fine powder aside (keep them separated).
In a double boiler over simmering water, melt the semi-sweet and bittersweet chocolate with 1/2 teaspoon canola oil in a heatproof bowl. Spread the chocolate over the parchment in a rectangle; freeze for 10 minutes.
In a double boiler, melt the white chocolate with 1/2 teaspoon canola oil in a heatproof bowl. Add the powdered candy to the white chocolate, stir to combine. Spread over the chocolate layer and top with peppermint chunks, pressing lightly on the candy.
Refrigerate until hardened, then break into pieces. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
*The easiest way to crush peppermints is to buy crushed peppermints at the grocery store. This is the first year I noticed them, though they might have been around for awhile. The second easiest way is to put the candy in a ziploc bag and pound it with a kitchen mallet. Forget using a rolling pin (you’ll ruin the rolling pin) or a food processor (you just might lose your hearing).