Erin Go Bragh!!!

Happy St. Paddy’s Day, lassies!! (And lads!)

A bit of leprechaun magic overtook me last night and I made what I now call Leprechaun bark. It was a big hit at happy hour.

If you want to make your own, here’s how:

Leprechaun Bark

1 bag dark chocolate chips
1 bag white chocolate chips
shortening, as needed
peppermint extract
15 peppermint candies
green food coloring

Temper the dark chocolate. I do this in a glass bowl over boiling water. Bring the water to a boil (make sure it doesn’t touch the bowl), then dump in the chips. Stir until they melt. Add 1/2 T. of shortening to chocolate and stir in (it will make it smooth and shiny).

Pour melted chocolate on a wax-paper lined cookie tray. Spread over entire tray.

Put tray in refrigerator.

Crush peppermint candies in food processor. Add green food coloring, if desired. Note that food coloring will make the peppermint much harder to remove from processor, so be prepared to use this seconds after you whirl it up.

Temper white chocolate, using same method as above. Add shortening, and two drops of peppermint oil. If you add too much, and the chocolate begins to seize (happened to me twice last night–out of my six batches!!), add more shortening until smooth.

Pour white chocolate onto hardened dark chocolate. If you want a pure white layer, do not mix too much. Otherwise, spread liberally over dark chocolate. This will mix the two colors together and you will have more of a mottled milk chocolate color on top (my preference).

Crumble the peppermint crumbs over the top, pressing lightly to adhere.

Refrigerate until hard.

Break into pieces and serve. Do a leprechaun jig if you think it’s really, really good.