Vibrant, delicious, takes less than an hour to make...this treat makes a perfect gift for the holidays. It's one of 13 ideas from Stir! Mix! Bake! Give!

(This recipe requires an instant-read thermometer to check the temperature of the melted chocolate.)
Servings: Makes about 1 pound
  • 1/2 cup shelled, dry-roasted, salted pistachios , coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped sweetened, dried tart cherries
  • 1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1 pound bittersweet chocolate (at least 64 percent cacao), finely chopped
  • Directions
    Line an 11" x 17" baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine pistachios, dried cherries, and pumpkin seeds in a bowl. Set aside 1/2 cup of mixture.

    To temper chocolate: Using a microwave, place 3/4 of chocolate in a microwave-safe glass or ceramic bowl (set aside remaining chocolate). Program microwave at 50 percent power. With bowl uncovered, heat chocolate for 30 seconds and then stir with a rubber spatula. Repeat, heating for 30 seconds and then stirring, until almost all the chocolate in the bowl is melted, about 4 minutes total.

    Using an instant-read thermometer, check temperature of chocolate. It should be no more than 115°. If it hasn't reached desired temperature, continue to heat (in 10-second increments). Then add reserved chocolate and stir constantly until completely melted and smooth and thermometer reads 88° to 90°. Chocolate is now tempered.

    Stir nut mixture into bowl containing chocolate.

    Using an offset spatula, spread chocolate in an even layer, about 1/4 inch thick, on the parchment. Sprinkle with reserved 1/2 cup nut mixture. Allow bark to cool until hard, at least 20 minutes. Break into irregular pieces.

    Wrap in gift boxes or airtight tins lined with decorative waxed paper, or place in cellophane bags and tie with ribbon. Chocolate bark will last several weeks.


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