I’ve never really understood the saying “life is like a box of chocolates”. I mean sure, I get it – you never know what you’re going to get -sometimes what you think will be a yummy dark chocolate ends up being a gross faux-cherry cream one that makes you gag. I get that.
But these days, boxes of chocolates come with little paper inserts that tell you what each chocolate is. Don’t like the cherry ones? Find out what it looks like, and then, simply, don’t pick it.
In that sense, life really isn’t like a box of chocolates. It doesn’t come with a manual to help you pick and choose the best options. Life is way more random, and sadly, there’s just no way to avoid picking a nasty one every once-in-a-while.
I certainly wish life did come with a manual, as it would help make all life’s big decisions a heck of a lot easier.
But alas, no such luck. For someone like me, who tends to over-think, over-analyze, and over stress about every situation (it’s really a curse), there’s no easy way to make a decision. What might take Person A 5 minutes to decide will take me days. I tend to make a lot of pro/con lists and flip flop before coming to a definite decision.
One thing I’m certain about, though, is always food. And, more specifically, sweets. When in doubt, I make my own box of chocolates. Take that, Life! Things are a little less difficult when you can consult some salty vs. sweet dessert action.
With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, these treats are perfect! Not only are they decadent and delicious, but they’re pretty to look at. I’m so shallow when it comes to my food. Pretty food is better food. The little pops of red raspberries takes these cookies (or chocolates? Or bark? Cookie bark?) to the next level.
Salty, sweet, and indulgent. You could, if you were so inclined, make these into actual cookies, but I love the idea of “cookie bark”. It’s essentially chocolate bark, sliced into random shapes and pieces, but on top of a large cookie layer.
My tip: use frozen raspberries! They’re so easy to smash into small pieces without creating a huge juicy mess. By the time the cookie bark has set, the raspberries will have already thawed.
|Chocolate Cookie Raspberry Pretzel Bark|| |
- 1¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1½ tsp vanilla extract
- 300 g good quality dark chocolate
- A large handful of pretzels, broken into pieces
- ⅓ cup frozen* raspberries, smashed into small pieces
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper; allow the edges of the paper to hang over the pan (you'll use it to lift the bark off the pan once it's cooled).
- In a small bowl, mix together flour and baking soda; set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add in egg, salt, and vanilla, beating until smooth. Add dry ingredients to the wet, stirring until combined.
- Transfer dough to the prepared baking tray. Using your hands or a rubber spatula, spread the dough over the baking pan until it forms one large, even layer. This will take some coaxing - wet your hands of the spatula often to prevent the dough from sticking. Once you've created a flat layer, bake for 18-20 minutes until browned. Remove from oven and cool completely.
- Melt chocolate in the microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until completely melted. Pour chocolate over the cookie, spreading it into a flat layer.
- Top with pretzels and frozen raspberry pieces, pressing them slightly into the chocolate.
- Place in the refrigerator and chill until completely set, about 2 hours.
- Lift the bark out of the baking pan by grabbing the parchment paper. Transfer to a cutting board and cut into large slices. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.