Just in time for Valentine’s Day, here is a thoughtful recipe for California Chocolate Bark, a delicious and thoughtful gift to give this sweet holiday. The homemade bark is simple to make, but still has a gourmet touch, as it features Malbec soaked dried cherries for an extra hint of sweetness. Make this chocolate bark for your beloved and enjoy with a glass of Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi Cabernet Merlot.
California Chocolate Bark
Yield: 10-12 serving
4 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
12 oz. dark chocolate chips
1 cup whole roasted nuts (your favorite)
1 cup of your favorite dried fruit (figs, apricots, cherries, cranberries)
2-3 tbsp. sea salt
1. Spread a large piece of parchment paper over a sheet pan.
2. Chop nuts and halve or quarter dried fruit based on size.
*For Malbec-soaked dried cherries: soak cherries in Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi Malbec for 2 hours, drain, place on baking sheet and bake at 200 degrees for 6- 8 hours.
3. Add all chocolate to a microwave proof bowl. In 30-second intervals, microwave the chocolate, quickly remove and stir, then return to microwave for 30 seconds until chocolate is completely melted—about 3 minutes.
4. Acting quickly, pour the melted chocolate onto parchment paper in a rectangle.
5. Allow chocolate to cool for about 30 seconds, then sprinkle nuts and fruit over chocolate.
6. Let chocolate cool for another 2 minutes, then sprinkle sea salt over top. Set aside for about 2 hours or until firm. Do not put in refrigerator to speed firming—the chocolate will gray.
7. Chop or break the bark into pieces and store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to one week and serve at room temperature.
*Entertaining Tip: This recipe is fun because you can customize it to suit your preferences. Here, Soto used cashews, dried cherries and dried figs—all native California ingredients, home of Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi.