chilli fruit and nut bark

Nik Sharma

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chilli fruit and nut bark

My favorite type of chocolate as a kid was the one with mixed dried fruit and nut because their texture and taste cut through the richness of the chocolate. Then, I later learned about how South Americans add chile to mole and other cacao-based products. As much as the type of chocolate you use imparts a different taste experience each time, so does the type of chilli powder. And though I do mention using Resham Patti chile powder here, you could use any chile powder you love.

  • Yield: one 9 in/23 cm circle of chocolate bark

Ingredients

1/2 cup mixed dried fruit (craisins, raisins, dried blueberries, apricots, etc.)

1/2 cup mixed nuts and seeds, chopped (walnuts, pistachios, pumpkin seeds)

1/2 Tbsp Maldon salt flakes

12 oz/ 340 g milk chocolate (I used Guittard’s 38% cacao)

6 oz/170 g bittersweet dark chocolate (I use Guittard’s 74% cacao)

1/2 tsp Resham Patti chilli powder

Instructions

  1. Take a 9 in/23 cm circular tart pan (or any pan you like) with a removable bottom. Cut a sheet of parchment paper (or wax paper) at least 2 in/5 cm wider than the pan and line the pan. Spread the dried fruit (if you use large fruit like apricot, chop them up) and nuts across the surface of the lined pan.
  2. Set up a double boiler or bain marie; the water should barely touch the pan where the chocolate will rest. Heat the water to medium-low heat and reduce the heat when it simmers. Add the milk chocolate and stir with a silicone spatula until completely melted. Pour this over the fruit and nuts in the pan and spread with a small offset spatula to coat evenly. Wipe the saucepan completely and return it to the double boiler. Melt the dark chocolate and stir in the Resham Patti chilli powder. Pour the melted dark chocolate over the milk chocolate layer, and then using the edge of your offset spatula, make circular “8” shape movements to create swirls of the dark and milk chocolate. Don’t overdo it, or you will lose the swirl patterns. Sprinkle the salt, leave the pan covered in a cool, dark corner of your kitchen, and let it set overnight.
  3. The next day, after the chocolate has firmed up, pop the base of the pan to release the bark and then carefully peel the parchment paper from the bark and serve as needed. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 weeks.

Notes

  • What’s Resham Patti chilli ? – it’s got a brighter red color than Kashmiri chilli powder in color but is a bit hotter. If you can’t find it at an Indian grocery store, use the same amount of ground guadjillo chile powder.
  • I’ve used Guittard’s milk and dark chocolate here because the texture is smooth, and the dark chocolate has interesting notes of fruit and red wine, which works with the dried fruit and nut combination added to this bark.

5 Responses

  1. Whoa, such a sophisticated palette for a young kid! I was plain milk chocolate all the way – don’t want anything to "ruin" it.
    I love the idea of adding chile powder though. Sounds amazing!

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