Cherry White Chocolate Bark

Cherry White Chocolate BarkMy husband and I have never really celebrated Valentine’s Day, not since we were in high school, anyway (…yes, we were high school sweethearts!).  I’m not really into all that mushy stuff, we rarely exchange gifts for holidays at all, actually, and our idea of the perfect night is one spent cuddled up on the couch with dinner and a movie (or Modern Family!).  Most of all, we just don’t need an excuse to have a night dedicated to ‘us’ – we have them all the time!Cherry White Chocolate BarkCherry White Chocolate Bark

Okay, I have to be honest and say that the girl in me thinks little pink hearts are absolutely adorable, melts for cutesy Valentine-themed anything and totally rocks socks covered in hearts.  After all, pink is my favorite color!  And Valentine’s Day is a great excuse to spend some extra time in the kitchen making something adorable!   Not that I really need an excuse…  So maybe I kind of love V-Day for my own reasons.Cherry White Chocolate Bark

This year, I decided to whip up a batch of Cherry White Chocolate Bark!  I am crazy for bark.  I could go on and on about it, but I’ll cut to the chase.  I LOVE how easy it is to make and how easy it is to adapt to any occasion or flavor combination!  I also love how easy it is to EAT…I’m especially skilled at that part!  Even the husband went gaga over this batch of bark and he is very particular when it comes to sweets.  That means one thing and one thing only…this recipe is a winner!Cherry White Chocolate Bark

Cherry White Chocolate Bark

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 30 pieces

1 piece

Ingredients

  • 1 12 oz bag of white chocolate chips
  • 1 12 oz bag of red candy melts
  • 1/2 tsp cherry flavoring (oil based)
  • m&ms and sprinkles for decorating

Instructions

  1. Melt red candy melts by method of your choice (I use the microwave). Let cool for a couple minutes and stir in the cherry flavoring. Spread on a sheet of wax paper or foil and let sit until completely hardened.
  2. Melt white chocolate chips by the method of you choice. Spread evenly over the first layer. Sprinkle with m&ms, sprinkles, and anything else you'd like to decorate your bark with. Let it sit until completely hardened.
  3. Break into bite-sized pieces.

Notes

You can substitute cherry chips instead of red candy melt and flavoring (my grocery store doesn't carry them, so I stuck with the flavoring).

http://paintchipsandfrosting.com/2014/02/04/cherry-white-chocolate-bark/
Cherry White Chocolate Bark

Loaded White Chocolate Easter Bark

Loaded White Chocolate Easter BarkLoaded White Chocolate Easter Bark, yep I’d say that is a very appropriate description of this delicious flavor combination.  Just the thought of white chocolate sprinkled with lots of festive Easter candy and adorable sprinkles (yes, those are little bunny and butterfly sprinkles you see!) makes me drool.  As I always do, I stuffed my face full of it for a day, then had to send it to work with the husband.  Oh how I missed it the second it walked out the door.

Loaded White Chocolate Easter Bark

I love bark for so many reasons.  Let’s start with an obvious one: it is SUPER easy to make!  When a recipe is as simple as melting chocolate and spreading it out over waxed paper, it is (near) impossible to screw up!  This leads almost directly to the next reason: time.  It takes less than ten minutes (closer to five minutes really) to prepare your bark, and you can pop it in the fridge to let it harden if you’re really tight on time.  Do be careful though, refrigerating/freezing chocolate can cause it to turn white.  It’s called bloom and while it is okay to consume (within expiration), it does not look pretty at all!

Loaded White Chocolate Easter Bark

Bark is so simple; it’s just chocolate or whatever type of candy/chips you choose to melt (almond bark, candy melts, etc.), which makes it pretty universally appealing.  It is not impossible that someone will dislike it though, says the wife of someone who doesn’t particularly like chocolate or dessert in general *gasp!* and who did not care for my Leprechaun Bark.  He did, however, did like this Easter bark and said it reminded him of frosted animal crackers!

Loaded White Chocolate Easter Bark

The sky is the limit with bark; you can use ANYTHING!  Mix in candy, pretzels, crushed cookies, sprinkles, or whatever your imagination can come up with.   Regardless of what you add to it, you will get a wonderful treat that takes no time to make, can be dressed up for any occasion, and will likely be a hit with everyone eating it.  That, my friends, is what I call perfection, or at least pretty darn close!

Loaded White Chocolate Easter BarkLoaded White Chocolate Easter Bark

This Easter bark is perfectly festive and so easy to whip up if you’re short on time.  I used Reese’s eggs, milk chocolate m&ms and Robins eggs, but like I said before, the sky is the limit!  The swirling on my bark is not incredibly noticeable and that is because my chocolate and candy coating were still a little warm when I poured and swirled them.  If you let them cool to room temperature, the colors will not blend together as much.   I’ve already been dreaming up the next bark I want to make and it will definitely involve chocolate and peanut butter.

Loaded White Chocolate Easter Bark

Easter Bark

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 package white chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup pink candy melts
  • sprinkles and candy for decorating

Instructions

  1. Melt the chocolate chips with 1 tsp vegetable oil using the method of your choice. Separately, melt the candy melts. Let each cool until they are just about room temperature.
  2. Spread the white chocolate over a layer of wax paper as thick or thin as you'd like and then spoon or drizzle the melted candy coating over the top. Use a fork/spoon/spatula to swirl the colors together.
  3. Sprinkle with candy and sprinkles and let it harden completely.
  4. Break or cut into bite-sized pieces and serve.
http://paintchipsandfrosting.com/2013/03/27/easter-bark/

Gingersnaps with Orange-Ginger Cream Filling

Cream-Filled GingersnapsThere is something wonderful about Christmas.  Do you know what it is?  COOKIES!  Okay okay…there are lots of wonderful things about Christmas, way too many to count actually!  It is my absolute favorite time of year!!  I’m not one bit embarrassed to start rocking out to Christmas tunes the day after Halloween,  I just can’t help it!   Cream-Filled GingersnapsCream-Filled Gingersnaps

I got this recipe from Recipe Girl; I doubled it and made a couple adjustments, but nothing major, then I dipped them in white chocolate. Yum!  The cookie itself is light and crisp around the outside and gets slightly more dense and almost chewy in the middle of the larger ones.  It has a wonderful flavor that is not too strong/overpowering. Cream-Filled GingersnapsCream-Filled Gingersnaps

The cookies were a little crispy at first, but after they were filled, they became much more soft (for that reason, I wouldn’t make the cookie alone without underbaking it a bit).  The orange-ginger cream had a very mild flavor that paired really well with the cookie and the white chocolate took it to the next level!  These are definitely something I will make again!Cream-Filled Gingersnaps

Gingersnaps:

Yield: 4-5 dozen depending on size

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 sticks (1 1/2 cup) butter, softened
  • 1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter, brown sugar, and 1 cup granulated sugar until fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  3. Add molasses, egg, and vanilla, and beat at medium-high until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Reduce speed to low; add flour mixture and mix until well combined.
  4. Cover and chill at least 30 minutes or up to 1 day.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°. Place remaining 1 cup granulated sugar in a shallow bowl.
  6. Scoop rounded tablespoons of dough and shape into a ball (I did this for the first batch but I wanted them smaller so I did even tablespoons for the rest); roll in sugar to coat. Arrange about 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
  7. Using the bottom of a glass that has been lightly greased, then dipped in sugar, flatten dough into 1/4-inch-thick disks.
  8. Bake 13 to 15 minutes, or until firm. Remove from oven and immediately transfer cookies to a cooling rack.

Orange-Ginger Cream Filling:

  • 1/4 cup (4 ozs) cream cheese
  • 2 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp grated orange zest
  • 1 tsp heavy cream
  • 1/2  ground ginger
  • 1 3/4 cups powdered sugar , plus more as needed
  1. In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients; mix until smooth, adding more powdered sugar as needed (filling should have consistency of very thick frosting).
  2. With a small spatula, frost bottoms of half the cookies (1-2 tsp depending on size of cookie); top with remaining cookie to make sandwich.

White Chocolate Dip

  • 1 package white chocolate chips
  • 1-3 tsp vegetable oil
  1. Melt white chocolate chips and 1 1/2 tsp vegetable oil in a microwave safe dish for a minute at 70% power.
  2. Stir well, then continue to melt in increments of 15-20 seconds until completely melted.  If your chocolate seems to thick, you can add more vegetable oil to thin it out.
  3. Dip cookies in chocolate and let set.

Nutella Oreo Truffle Pops

Nutella Oreo Truffle PopsI’d really like to call these White Chocolate Nutella Oreo Truffle Pops, but that seems like too much of a mouthful.  Names aside, these were amazing!  I was surprised at the texture; I wasn’t sure what to expect from the oreo crumbs.  They were different than cake pops obviously, but in such a good way.  They had a bit of a crunch to them and the white chocolate, Oreo, and Nutella flavors all complimented each other in the most wonderful way!  I even got a “this is the best thing I’ve ever eaten;” that’s my favorite kind of compliment!  What could possibly be better than that?  Oh yeah, my husband liked them!!  He doesn’t usually enjoy sweets…in fact, he rarely eats them (usually I’m shoving a forkful at him saying “come on, just try it.”  Cakes, cupcakes, cookies, cheesecakes, or pies; he will most likely turn up his nose.  And with how much I love to bake, we end up having very happy neighbors and coworkers!

Nutella Oreo Truffle PopsNutella Oreo Truffle Pops

 

 

Nutella Oreo Truffle Pops

This is what your crumb mixture should look like when it’s ready to be rolled into balls

Nutella Oreo Truffle Pops

Yield: 15 pops / Prep Time: 10-15 minutes / Chill time: 15 minutes

  • 31 Oreos (you could use the whole package and make more)
  • 5-7 Tbsp Nutella
  • 1 package white chocolate chips or white candy melts
  • 15 cake pop or lollipop sticks
  1. Crush the Oreos in food processer, blender, or a magic bullet (that’s what I used).
  2. In a medium bowl, add 4 Tbsp Nutella and mix with a wooden spoon.  You can use your hands if that is easier for you.  Add additional Nutella until the consistency is such that you can form balls with the crumb mixture but it is not too wet.  I used about 6 1/2 Tbsp for regular Oreos, so you’ll need less for double stuffed  and more for low fat.  See a picture of what mine looked to the right.
  3. Form balls with the mixture; I made 15 balls but again, depending on how big you make them, it could be more or less.
  4. Freeze the balls for 10-15 minutes in the freezer or chill in the fridge for about half an hour.
  5. Meanwhile, melt a handful of white chocolate chips in the microwave.   When the balls are chilled, dip the sticks into the white chocolate and insert about halfway into the ball.  Let it set (you can stick it back in the freezer for a couple minutes).
  6. Melt the remaining white chocolate.  If you are using chocolate chips and you think they are a little too thick, add a teaspoon or two of vegetable oil.
  7. Dip the pops, decorate, let them set, and enjoy!Nutella Oreo Truffle Pops