Peppermint Bark Candy

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Jennifer Murphy

Senior Cook
Joined
May 18, 2014
Messages
162
Location
Silicon Valley, CA
I searched for recipes for peppermint bark candy. They are all fairly similar. This is what I took away.

The ingredients seem to include these:
  • 1 lb semi-sweet or dark chocolate (I'll probably prefer dark)
  • 1 lb white chocolate made with cocoa butter
  • .75 to 1.5 tsp peppermint extract
  • 3-5 candy canes, crushed
  • 2 tsp canola oil
Some questions:
  1. If the white chocolate is made with cocoa butter, do I still need the canola oil?
  2. What's the best way to get the layers even?
  3. Is there a way to cut it up into regular squares, like 1/2" by 1/2"?
  4. Is there any reason not to buy crushed peppermint candy instead of candy canes that I have to crush?
Does anyone have any good sources for these ingredients? Preferably mail order?

Thanks
 
I wouldn't bother with the oil. Some folks think that a little oil helps to make the melted chocolate smoother/creamier. Also, some people use coconut oil which supposedly helps to make the chocolate shine or be glossy when it hardens.

I wouldn't worry about using expensive high-quality chocolate if the flavor is going to be overshadowed by a strong flavor like peppermint.

Head for the baking aisle and buy some real chocolate chips and peppermint extract then swing by the candy aisle and grab some starlight peppermints.

I melt chocolate chips in the microwave 10 seconds at a time stirring after each blast until melted.

I wouldn't worry about slight differences in thickness for a homemade handcrafted treat.

I would break the chocolate into random chunks. Heating a sharp chef's knife blade in a glass of boiling hot water and wiping it dry might help to score the chocolate and make the cutting a little easier.

If you have a mini muffin pan it might be nice to make this in little paper/foil muffin cup liners.

Another thought would be to marble the white and dark chocolate together.

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Let us know how you make out!
 
I agree with everything Aunt Bea said, except that I would use chocolate bars from the candy aisle instead of chocolate chips. Chips are formulated to stay more whole and don't melt as well as bars.
I agree, some baking chips are made from a funky collection of ingredients and don't melt as well as others.

I have good luck melting the Aldi dark chocolate chips.

Closeout-priced chocolate from holidays like Easter, Christmas, Halloween, etc... is a great value for baking and candy making at home.
 
I wouldn't bother with the oil. Some folks think that a little oil helps to make the melted chocolate smoother/creamier. Also, some people use coconut oil which supposedly helps to make the chocolate shine or be glossy when it hardens.
The recipes that recommended oil said that it thins the chocolate making it easier to spread and makes it easier less likely to crumble.

I melt chocolate chips in the microwave 10 seconds at a time stirring after each blast until melted.
This sounds easier and less error prone than the stovetop.

I would break the chocolate into random chunks. Heating a sharp chef's knife blade in a glass of boiling hot water and wiping it dry might help to score the chocolate and make the cutting a little easier.
This is after it's all done, right?

Is it difficult to get it out of the pan without breaking it?

Another thought would be to marble the white and dark chocolate together.
Do mean to melt both in separate bowls, then stir the white into the dark just a little?

Thanks
 
I agree with everything Aunt Bea said, except that I would use chocolate bars from the candy aisle instead of chocolate chips. Chips are formulated to stay more whole and don't melt as well as bars.
Trader Joe's and the local market both have chocolate in large chucks. Would they be even better than bars?
 
The recipes that recommended oil said that it thins the chocolate making it easier to spread and makes it easier less likely to crumble.


This sounds easier and less error prone than the stovetop.


This is after it's all done, right?

Is it difficult to get it out of the pan without breaking it?


Do mean to melt both in separate bowls, then stir the white into the dark just a little?

Thanks

asier and less error prone than the stovetop.


This is after it's all done, right?

Is it difficult to get it out of the pan without breaking it?


Do mean to melt both in separate bowls, then stir the white into the dark just a little?

Thanks
Yes, I would wait until after the candy was finished before breaking it or cutting it into pieces.

When I make chocolate-covered nuts/cereal flakes/chow mein noodles, etc... I make them on a sheet pan lined with the wax paper found in most cereal boxes, mainly because I'm cheap. After the candies have been chilled/set in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes they come off the waxed paper with no problems. I refrigerate the finished product in an old fruitcake tin lined with wax paper. There is no magic in that, you could use a more modern plastic container.

Yes, I meant to melt both in separate bowls before swirling them or marbling them. If I was doing it I would make two batches. One batch would contain 75% white chocolate and 25% dark chocolate and the second batch would contain 75% dark chocolate and 25% white chocolate.

Spread the primary/majority layer first and then drizzle or plop the second layer randomly over the surface and swirl them together with a butter knife or spatula while they are still in liquid form. I suppose the only trick is knowing when to be satisfied with the marble effect and stop swirling.

I really think that you are overthinking or complicating what should be a fun little project.

Just do it, if it doesn't look perfect it will still be tasty and disappear quickly.

Good luck!
 
Yes, I would wait until after the candy was finished before breaking it or cutting it into pieces.
Thanks

Yes, I meant to melt both in separate bowls before swirling them or marbling them. If I was doing it I would make two batches. One batch would contain 75% white chocolate and 25% dark chocolate and the second batch would contain 75% dark chocolate and 25% white chocolate.

Spread the primary/majority layer first and then drizzle or plop the second layer randomly over the surface and swirl them together with a butter knife or spatula while they are still in liquid form. I suppose the only trick is knowing when to be satisfied with the marble effect and stop swirling.
Perfect

I really think that you are overthinking or complicating what should be a fun little project.

Just do it, if it doesn't look perfect it will still be tasty and disappear quickly.
What? 🤨🤔🤨🤔😲😄

For some people, making mountains out of mole hills is the fun. Anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
 
I hope this doesn't upset Aunt Bea, but I did a little research into candy canes vs crushed peppermint candy. IMHO, crushed wins hands down. It's at least as cheap. It's already crushed, so it's ready to go. and there are no wrappers to go in the landfill.

Here are about 25 different products on Amazon sorted by $/oz. I'll probably try Brach's crushed peppermint candy at $18.95 for 4 ounces (2.5 pounds). It's a well-known brand and just a little more than the cheapest ones.

image.png


Any thoughts?

If I get time, I might do a similar spreadsheet comparing made-at-home bark with already made.
 
I hope this doesn't upset Aunt Bea, but I did a little research into candy canes vs crushed peppermint candy. IMHO, crushed wins hands down. It's at least as cheap. It's already crushed, so it's ready to go. and there are no wrappers to go in the landfill.

Here are about 25 different products on Amazon sorted by $/oz. I'll probably try Brach's crushed peppermint candy at $18.95 for 4 ounces (2.5 pounds). It's a well-known brand and just a little more than the cheapest ones.

image.png


Any thoughts?

If I get time, I might do a similar spreadsheet comparing made-at-home bark with already made.
That's a typo, eh? It's supposed to read 40 ounces (2.5 pounds), right?
 
Chocolate chips can "bake" in the microwave and get crumbly if you aren't careful. I'd recommend bars or melting disks.
 
Jennifer, just how much "bark" do you intend to make?
Two and a half pounds of crushed peppermint is huge. You only need the equivalent of 3 Candy Canes. You will probably have enough to make.... have no idea but maybe 30 batches? or more!
3 - 5 candy canes, depending on size, is probably only 1/2 cup.
 

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