Today’s Guest Blog, by Elana Horwich, is in celebration of National Chocolate Week! You won’t want to miss Elana’s New Book MEAL AND A SPIEL and all of her delicious recipes. Feature photo by Xavier Ferrara.
Superfood & Sea Salt Chocolate Bark by Elana Horwich
You won’t want to leave the house with crunchy dark chocolate bark like this in the freezer. It tastes like a dream and is also good for you, so there will be no guilt when you go for a piece a few times a day for a solid feel-good pick me up…
I’ve been at many foodie fairs giving out tastes of my Superfood and Sea Salt Chocolate Bark, along with a stylish print-out of the recipe, only to be told by tons of swanky Los Angelenos that they didn’t want the recipe. They want me to make the bark and deliver it to their home on a weekly basis, and no one seemed to care what this exclusive service might cost!
Here is the recipe for a healthy, antioxidant-packed treat that you can enjoy making during this time of social distancing. It only takes a few minutes of prep, and if needed you can order all the ingredients online.
It’s hard to pinpoint what makes this chocolate bark so darn good.
Is it the rich dark chocolate melted with virgin coconut oil for a velvety texture that once eaten glides smoothly across your tongue?
Is it that it’s topped with healthy seeds like buckwheat groats (yes they are seeds!) which are not only good for your heart, but provide a pronounced toothy texture? This bark is my version of Nestle Crunch, my favorite chocolate bar when I was a kid, but mine is good for you and so much more delicious.
Is it the sea salt that contrasts the chocolate and gives this bark an addictive quality that has everyone coming back for more?
Is it that it’s not too sweet and invigorates your body? We are using dark chocolate, which has some but not too much sugar. However, many chocolate barks add uber-sugary toppings like caramel and candy that make you feel gross afterwards. By using many raw seeds, there is a balance between the sweetness and the protein-rich nutty flavors. You can eat this bark for breakfast. I do!
Or is it that it only takes minutes to make and is impossible to mess up? Beyond that, once you understand the basics of the recipe, you can get creative and top it with whatever you have in the house.
Alas, I haven’t started a chocolate bark delivery company because my job is to empower people to have confidence and be playful in the kitchen. This is an ideal recipe even for the newest of cooks. I hope you have as much fun making it as you will eating it.
RECIPE Serves 4-6
(measurements are suggestions…feel free to eyeball, and to multiply the recipe and just sprinkle on the toppings as generously as you like.)
- 2 70%-85% top-quality dark chocolate bar, 3.5 ounces *See Note
- 2 Tablespoon coconut oil
- 2-4 Tablespoons raw buckwheat groats
- 2-4 Tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds
- 2 Tablespoon raw sunflower seeds
- 4 Tablespoons raisins or dried cherries
- 2 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt
- Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. **See Notes
- Heat pan on medium heat for a minute or two. In the meantime, break chocolate bar into smaller pieces.
- Add coconut oil to pan, followed by the chocolate. Mix together.
- When chocolate has JUST melted, remove pan from heat. DO NOT LET IT BURN.
- Using a spatula, pour chocolate out onto a parchment paper-covered baking sheet.
- Sprinkle buckwheat groats, seeds, raisins, and salt onto the chocolate.
- Put baking sheet in freezer for 15-30 minutes.
- Once hard, break into pieces and eat!
- Store in freezer or fridge.
* Use only the best chocoolate. My favorite brands of chocolate are Valrhona, Green and Blacks, and Callebaut (which I buy in bulk online to make heaps of this bark.)
**Don’t know what parchment paper is? Don’t freak out. Just buy it and use it. It is a great tool to keep anything you are baking or roasting on a baking sheet from burning and making a mess.