Homemade Dark Chocolate Bark
Who doesn't love chocolate, right? I am sure you've read tons of articles on the health benefits of chocolate, such as improving heart and brain function. It's no secret to us anymore that chocolate is a great source of antioxidants and some crucial minerals such as iron and magnesium. But that's not what I want to talk about today.
Making chocolate at home is surprisingly easy when having access to good quality ingredients. It's amazing how we can adjust the final product to our liking and even make it healthier than store bought one, using different flavors and types of sweeteners. The options are truly unlimited. But that's not all of it. Chocolate is so fun to make and this can be a great way of engaging your kids in the kitchen.
So, let's not wait anymore and get into the recipe. And don't forget- no matter the health benefits, chocolate is a calorie dense food that should be enjoyed in moderation.
HOMEMADE DARK CHOCOLATE BARK
YIELD: makes around 200-250g
For the chocolate
80g of cocoa butter
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp of cacao powder
20 ml of date syrup
40 ml of maple syrup
1/2 tsp of vanilla bean powder
Pinch of salt
For the toppings
2 tbsp of nuts of your choice (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts and cashews)
1 tbsp of goji berry
1 tbsp of chopped pistachios
2-3 apple chips broken into small pieces
1 tbsp of coconut flakes
Pinch of dried edible flowers for decoration (optional)
Touch of coarse ground sea salt
NOTE: When purchasing cacao or cocoa products, I try supporting fair trade companies whenever possible.
Start by melting the cocoa butter using the water bath method at a low temperature.
Once the butter is melted, add it to a bowl along with the cacao powder and mix well.
After the mixture has cooled down for a couple of minutes, add a pinch of salt, the vanilla bean powder and the liquid sweeteners (maple and date syrup). Stir well. Feel free to substitute with your favorite type of sweetener.
Next, spread the chocolate mixture onto a tray covered with parchment paper. Using a spatula or a spoon, make sure to get an evenly thick layer.
Finally, decorate your chocolate. The amounts and types of toppings mentioned above in the ingredients section are just an example of how I like my bark. Be creative and experiment with your favorite flavors.
Once decorated, let it set in the fridge for a couple of hours.
Break or cut the firm chocolate into triangles or any preferred shape.
It's finally ready to eat! Enjoy!
Sending you much love,