Monday, November 30, 2015

#SRCHolidayTreats: Turtle Bark

You would think that I would learn.
I am a procrastinator by nature, and that's why this post is a little...odd.  It's time for the Secret Recipe Club Bonus Reveal Day:  Holiday Treats.  With a fifth Monday in November, the entire Club has come together to celebrate the season by making treats for the holiday season from each other's blogs. Fun, right?
I was given the assignment of perusing Michaela's blog at An Affair from the Heart.  I spent a long time looking at cookies and squares, trying to decide what would be best.  I mean, there were so many good looking options!  I considered Peanut Butter Kiss cookies, and Chocolate Mint Candy Cookies, before deciding to challenge myself and make candy.
Every year for Christmas, I make a goody bag for my support staff of things like pickles, fudge, and nuts and bolts.  I figure that even if you don't like those items, someone will show up over the season who will enjoy the treat...or you can regift as a quick hostess gift.  When I saw Michaela's recipe for Turtle Bark, I thought that sounded like a delightful addition to the bag!
I present to you now An Affair from the Heart's Turtle Bark:

1/2 c pecans, toasted and chopped
2 c dark chocolate chips
Caramel Filling:1/2 c white sugar
2 Tbsp water
5 Tbsp heavy cream
1 Tbsp butter

1.  Make the Caramel:  In a small saucepan, stir together sugar and water with a non metal spoon.  Microwave cream for 30 seconds to warm.  Over medium heat, stir until sugar has dissolved, brushing any crystals of sugar from the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush.  Turn heat to high.  Stop stirring mixture and swirl using the handle.  Boil until the sugar has turned light amber, about 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and add butter and cream.  The mixture will froth.  Stir until combined and calm.  Set aside to cool completely.
2.  Line an 8x8" pan with parchment paper.  Melt chocolate chips in the microwave on power level 4, stirring every minute.  Pour half the chocolate into the pan, smoothing to level.  Set in the fridge to allow chocolate to harden.  Pour about 1/2 the caramel sauce over the chocolate and sprinkle with the pecans, reserving about 2 Tbsp.  Press into caramel, and then return to the fridge to allow to set up.
3.  Pour remaining melted over the chocolate over the caramel, sprinkle with pecans and drizzle with remaining caramel.  Return to fridge to set up.
From An Affair from the Heart

Watch this closely.  This is when it starts boiling.
This is when you've gone too far, and you've burned the sugar.
This is a picture of the three caramel fillings I ended up making.  On the left, attempt #1, burnt sugar sauce.  In the middle, sauce #2, which I think I pulled too soon and so it ended up watery and weird looking with big sugar crystals floating in it (but it tastes amazing...I'm going to pour it over ice cream), and then attempt #3 which (thankfully) worked.

It was at this point that I'd been cursing for a while and I stopped taking pictures.
But I soldiered on.  I just don't have many pictures.

So I poured on the caramel, and pressed in the nuts...
Then spread it with chocolate and sprinkled with finely chopped nuts.  This was delicious.  I gave J a sample of the caramel, and all he said was, "It's really sweet."  My husband and Captain Obvious.  They're besties.
Thanks Michaela!  This was a yummy treat...that I'm not sure we're going to share.


  1. So glad that this worked out for you in the end! It really looks heavenly!! Nice choice for the SRC! :D Have a wonderful holiday! :D

  2. Interesting, and those look so good. Great choice for SRC.

  3. This sounds SO yummy! What a fantastic treat to make and share (OR NOT!)+

  4. Oh yum! I love anything turtle. Bring on the bark!

  5. Yummy pick. I love turtle bark. What a fun holiday choice. Happy Holidays! Traci, BurntApple

  6. I love making barks and this turtle version sounds amazing.

  7. I love making bark and this one looks especially good with the turtle flavors!

  8. I've never braved bark making. This one sounds lovely, though.