Recipe by Emma Laperruque
Two chocolate bark recipes in less than two weeks? Have I gone chocolate bark crazy? A little, maybe. To be fair, this recipe wasinspired by the first, Blueberry, Almond & Dark Chocolate Bark. After testing it at home, I brought in extras to the Marcus Samuelsson Group office, and the response was somewhere between enthusiastic and overjoyed. To my delight, people went back for seconds and thirds. (Who knew three ingredients could cause such excitement?)
Later that night, the office had a pizza party. We all got together, relaxed, ate, and talked about—can you guess it?—food. The conversation got to unusual dishes, like prosciutto ice cream, and crazy combinations, like bacon and chocolate. After a few of us shared very fond memories of bacon chocolate bars (I tried one from Vosges and crave it daily), we decided that another chocolate bark recipe was in need. A little less healthy, a lot more bacon-y.
Bacon and chocolate may be two of the most addictive ingredients around. Still—combining them sounds strange. But trust the taste buds, it works. Here, a thin layer of milk chocolate serves as the base. Crispy, salty, smoky bacon and tart, chewy dried cherries are sprinkled on top. Like last time, only three ingredients. The flavors contrast and complement each other at the same time. It may be more decadent than the first recipe, but that didn’t stop us from snacking on it around the office, way before 10 a.m. Chocolate bark for breakfast, why not? It has bacon, after all. (And rumor has it Gayle King is a fan…..)
Calories per serving: 142 per serving
Prep time: 40 mins
Cooking time: 20 mins
Total time: 1 hour
9 slices bacon
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips
Scant 1/2 cup dried cherries
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On the paper, trace a sheet of loose leaf or printer paper (8.5" x 11"). Flip the parchment paper so it's ink-side down.
2. Heat a medium saute pan over medium heat. Slice the bacon horizontally into thin strips. Toss the bacon into the pan and cook until just crispy, stirring occasionally and draining excess oil when needed—about 10 minutes. Remove bacon from pan and drain on a few paper towels (it will become crispier as it cools).
3. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler, or a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Stir occasionally, until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth.
3. Pour the melted chocolate into the center of the traced rectangle and spread evenly to fit the shape.
4. Crush the bacon just a bit between your fingers. Sprinkle the bacon crumbles and dried cherries on top of the chocolate evenly. Gently pat down with the palm of your hand.
5. Chill the bark in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before cutting into squares and serving.