Your Valentine is sure to love this delicious, easy-to-make dark chocolate bark. Refrigerate the bark until hardened, which means you can wait a few hours or let it chill overnight. Recipe makes 4 to 6 servings. 

Ingredients

  • 12 Ounce dark chocolate (or 1 package of dark chocolate chips), fair-trade, if possible
  • 2/3 Cup skinned, chopped hazelnuts, toasted for 3-5 minutes in a 300 degree F oven (toast until fragrant and make sure they don’t burn), then allowed to cool (you could also use Marcona almonds or cashews)
  • 2/3 Cup chopped dried apricots, preferably unsulphered/unsweetened (dried mango, dried cranberries or dried cherries would also be nice)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 Teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
  • generous pinch of coarse sea salt

Preparation

Step 1:

Combine toasted nuts, chopped dried fruit, cayenne pepper, and ground cinnamon in a small bowl. Mix well.

Step 2:

Place two-thirds of the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in 30-second increments until the chocolate is just melted. Add the rest of the chocolate and stir until smooth.

Step 3:

Pour chocolate onto a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Use a spatula to smooth out the chocolate evenly (it won’t cover the whole pan and that’s fine).

Step 4:

Sprinkle the nut/dried fruit mixture over the chocolate and press down firmly so these don’t loosen too much when you cut the bark. Sprinkle everything with coarse sea salt, then refrigerate for a few hours (or preferably overnight) until hardened. Use your hands or a sharp knife to break the bark into pieces.

Step 5:

Store in an air-tight container and consume within a few days.