If you like chocolate paired with orange, this is the dessert for you. A combination of orange peel, orange zest, and orange extract gives this chocolate bark a bright, citrus flavor. The orange nicely accents the cranberry and the almonds provide a satisfying crunch. A sprinkling of salt is the finishing touch.
Yield: 12 squares
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
12 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips*
1 cup slivered almonds or whole almonds, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries, preferably unsweetened
1 tablespoon orange peel, finely chopped
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/4 teaspoon orange extract
2 pinches of salt
*To lower the sugar content, use darker chocolate. Coarsely chop a chocolate bar with cacao content higher than 60%. We recommend using up to 70% cacao.
1. Toast the almonds by placing them in an un-oiled pan on the stove over medium-low heat. Stir continuously for 5-7 minutes, so that they don’t burn, but are lightly browned and have a toasted flavor. Set aside.
2. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Stir frequently. Reserve a small handful of the nuts and cranberries for sprinkling and pour the rest into the melted chocolate. Add the orange peel, zest, and orange extract. Add a pinch of salt. Stir together and take the mixture off the heat.
3. Pour the chocolate mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, taking care to spread the mixture evenly so that the bark is about a 1/4-inch thick. Sprinkle the reserved nuts and cranberries with a pinch of salt.
4. Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for at least an hour or until firm.
5. Remove the bark from the parchment paper and place on a cutting board. Use a large knife to cut it into squares of your preferred size.