My mother was always the lady who had all her shopping accomplished by Thanksgiving. My father was the man who waited until Christmas Eve. Their daughter fell somewhere in the middle.
With one gift left to buy and a few tokens left to wrap, I have not quite completed my preparations for the big day.
Honestly, I like a bit of the last minute hustle and bustle. Being organized and on top of things is not as important to me around Christmas time. I like having a few packages to wrap on Christmas Eve, and I even enjoy going out into the crazy Christmas world and picking up a few of the things left on my list.
If you are on top of everything and just couching it with a cup of hot chocolate until Thursday, good for you. I have respect. But, if you still need a gift for the neighbors or something to bring to that Christmas Eve party then I have your back.
Welcome to the bark game. The rules are simple. Don’t burn the chocolate - end of rules.
I like bark because the chocolate becomes a blank slate for whatever your imagination can dream up. Any combination of dried fruit, nuts, and crunch can be turned into a beautiful homemade candy.
For this bark I used white chocolate, but dark chocolate would be excellent too.
The white chocolate is melted, slowly, in the microwave. Yes, it really is okay to melt the chocolate in the microwave, just go very, very slowly.
Orange zest perfumes our chocolate base and candied ginger, dried cranberries, and salty pistachios are sprinkled onto the still-melted chocolate.
I like to stick my baking sheet in the freezer for a bit before I make the bark, this will help it to set up quickly.
After a few minutes in the fridge, its ready to break and package. This bark looks oh-so-pretty in cellophane bags. Or you could just eat the whole pan yourself, no judgment.
White Chocolate & Orange Bark with Cranberries, Ginger, and Pistachios
- 10 ounces white chocolate chips
- 1.5 ounces candied ginger, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup roasted, salted pistachios
- zest of one orange
Place a baking sheet in the freezer to chill.
In a microwave safe bowl, microwave white chocolate at 30 second increments, stirring after each heating period, until the chocolate is melted.
Line the chilled baking sheet with parchment paper. Add orange zest to chocolate, stirring to thoroughly combine, and pour chocolate out unto the prepared baking sheet.
Spread the chocolate so that it is about 1/4 inch in thickness and sprinkle with toppings. Gently press the toppings down into the chocolate.
Transfer the bark to the refrigerator for 30 minutes, or until set. Break apart gently and store in airtight containers in a cool place. Enjoy!