Saturday, 11 August 2012

My 3rd Bloggaversary & Salted Caramel Almond Pretzel Bark

Note : Due to the unexplained (and extremely irritating) fact that my computer came down with a scortching case of the dreaded "Blue Screen of Death" last week I have been unable to blog.  A blogger without her blog is like a cupcake without icing, like a library with no books, like Ryan Reynolds without his pecs.  You get the picture.  It ain't pretty. 

Currently my beloved laptop is on life support and its prognosis doesn't look good I'm afraid.  Due to this rather large hiccup I've had to curtail my blogging efforts which also include celebrating my third bloggaversay.   Thanks to my kids for letting me use their dilapitated laptop (what kind of parents give such a piece of crap to their kids?!?) in order for their dear ol' mom to share a recipe with her peeps that our family truly enjoyed.  Below is the post that I had planned for August 9th.  Sadly, the picture that I took of this recipe will have to be added at a later date.  You'll have to trust me that this treat looks wicked awesome!!

Without further adieu, my 'better late than never' blog post ...

Happy third bloggaversary to me!!  I still cannot wrap my head around the fact that I've been blogging for three whole years.  Who knew that I had that much to say?  Ok, truth be told, the people who know and love me realize that I do like to talk ... a lot.  But when I look at my stats and realize that I've posted 691 times about my blathering, opinions, reviews and recipes I'm still a little gobsmacked.

In order to celebrate this accomplishment I decided to share a truly delicious and really easy treat.  I'm talking 'my-thighs-ain't-gonna-love-me-tomorrow' it's so easy to make.  If you can spread, melt and break something you've got this recipe in the bag!

This is one of those recipes that feeds the sweet-salty beast that dwells within me.  This treat balances the sweetness of the caramel and chocolate with the saltiness of the pretzels and the sea salt lightly sprinkled on top!  Oh m'gravy it is good.  It's one of those treats where you keep telling yourself that you'll just eat that little piece that seems all on its own in the pan.  Then you see another all by itself and another until all of a sudden you have three kids who have snuck up on you and caught you redhanded schnorffing down the new treat that they were told they had to wait for.  Um, this image is totally hypothetical. :s

So, if you're looking for a treat that is quick, tasty and a crowd pleaser give this a try.  You can easily accomodate allergies by adding or removing various add-ins.  For those with peanut allergies try Blue Diamond Almonds as a safe tree nut option.

Also, if you're thinking that you should have given me a bloggaversay gift do I have an idea for you!  I'd really love it if you'd spread the word about my wee blog.  Have you liked me on Facebook?  Have you signed up for the email feed (so you're the first to know when I have a new blog post?  And don't forget to leave me a comment so I don't feel like I'm just talking to myself here in Blogland!!  No one likes to talk to themselves, right?  All of the various Facebook/email etc info is in the upper left corner of the blog.

Here's to another three years of my incessant blathering!!  I hope you enjoy this treat!

Salted Caramel Almond Pretzel Bark
Inspired by: Southern Hospitality

250g bag of pretzel sticks (enough to cover one layer on a jelly roll pan)
1 1/4 cups almonds, roughly chopped
1 cup butter
1 cup light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
sea salt

Preheat oven to 350F.  Line a jelly roll pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper.  Spread pretzels and almond pieces onto the pan in a single layer.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and brown sugar, stirring occasionally.  Bring this mixture to a boil.  Once this mixture begins to boil allow it to continue boiling for 3 minutes without stirring.  It'll bubble up quite a bit.  Do not fear.  You are witnessing the birth of caramel!

Carefully pour the hot caramel back and forth over the pretzels and almonds in the prepared pan.  Don't worry if you have a few bare spots lacking in caramel.  It'll work itself out in the oven.  Pop this into the oven for 5 minutes.

Remove pan from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over the caramel/pretzel/almond mixture.  After a few minutes spread the chocolate evenly over the top of the bark using a spatula.  Sparsely sprinkle with sea salt.  You just want a hint of salty.  Place the pan into the fridge to help the chocolate harden a bit (30 minutes).  Break into bark pieces. 

Store extras in a sealed container in the fridge (preferrably behind the broccoli where your loved ones won't think to look so you can nibble at this at your leisure!).

Note:  I plan on trying this treat using Craisins in the mix as well.  The list of options is really endless.  Even some Teddy Grams would be a good add in.


April from Comox BC said...

This sounds both delicious and dangerous :-)

Laurie@The Baking Bookworm said...

Thanks April! It was a hit here. :)

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