White Chocolate, Cherry and Pumpkin Seed Bark

Happy National White Chocolate Day! I figured there was no better way to celebrate an obscure food holiday than to whip up a seasonal take on one of my favorite easy desserts, chocolate bark. This make-ahead confection can be loaded with your choice of dried fruits, nuts and spices. I chose to go for big seasonal flavor by topping melted white chocolate with toasted pumpkin seeds, dried cherries and a pinch of Allspice for a pumpkin pie-like taste to every bite.

Not a white chocolate fan? Try my semi-sweet chocolate bark layered with dried cranberries, apricots and salted almonds.

White Chocolate, Cherry & Pumpkin Seed Bark

Yield: 12-15 servings

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 10 min

Ingredients:

1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
Pinch of salt
12 oz. white chocolate (Recommended: Valrhona)
¼ teaspoon Allspice
¾ cup pitted, dried tart cherries

Directions:

Toast the pumpkin seeds by placing them in a pan over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning (be careful as the seeds may crackle as they heat).

Remove the toasted seeds, toss them with the salt and and set them aside to cool.

Make a double boiler by first boiling a large pot of water.

Break the chocolate bar into pieces then add the pieces to a smaller pot. Hold the smaller pot over the boiling water to melt the chocolate, careful not to let any water leak into the smaller pot.

Stir the chocolate continuously until it is smooth. Add the Allspice and mix until well incorporated.

Pour the chocolate onto a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper.

Use a rubber spatula to spread the chocolate out until it is roughly ¼" thick.

Immediately top with the toasted pumpkin seeds and dried cherries.

Let the bark harden in the refrigerator or in a cool, dry place for at least 4 hours, or until firm.

Cut or break the chocolate bark into pieces and enjoy!

* Helpful Hint: Store any leftover bark in the fridge to ensure that it stays firm.

 

      

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