You have to make chocolate bark at your cafe a friend said before I opened Divalicious Chocolate Cafe, on the edge of Chinatown, in the neighborhood of NOLITA. I said, “Sure”, but I had no idea what she was talking about.
I envisioned a chocolate confection that resembled bark from a tree. It seemed fascinating and complex. How is it made? Did you have to pump air into the chocolate? How does that even happen? Perhaps it would look like a Cadbury Flake bar since it resembles layers of peeling. A Flake bar would be challenging to make without a machine. I seemed hard in my imagination.
Later, when I found out that chocolate bark was just thin sheets of chocolate with dried fruits, nuts, cookies, etc on top, I realized I’d really overthought this. I wondered “Is bark too easy to make and sell at my chocolate cafe?” Absolutely not. It turned out to be a hit and my Salted & Toasted Black and White Sesame Chocolate Bark was best-seller.
I always had at least eight varieties of bark on hand at the cafe. When one of my oldest friends, Marcel would visit the cafe, he always bought the sesame one. I only make bark on special occasions even though you could make it anytime since it’s so easy to make. The downside would be having to eat all that bark. Some of you will not see the downside of that, but I know bark only leads to more bark. When Marcel’s birthday came around last week, I whipped him up a batch.
- 1 recipe How To Temper Chocolate
- 1 pound of bittersweet chocolate buttons or pieces
- 1/3 pound bittersweet chocolate, block or bars
- 3 ounces sesame seeds, white and black, lightly toasted
- 1/2 teaspoon flaky sea salt
- Temper chocolate (see recipe below).
- Line a sheet pan with parchment or waxed paper.
- Pour the tempered chocolate on the paper, spreading it evenly with an offset spatula or a silicone scraper. Reserve a couple of tablespoons of the chocolate to drizzle top of the sesame seeds on the bark.
- Immediately sprinkle the bark evenly with the sesame seeds. Holding the edges of the pan firmly tap the sheet pan a few times on the counter to level the chocolate and settle the sesame seats.
- Drizzle the bark with remaining chocolate and sprinkle it evenly with sea salt. If you’re working in a cool space (around 60 F° or lower) allow it to cool. If you’re working in a warm space, snap cool the bark in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes.
- When the bark is completely cooled break it into pieces.