The Kitchen Prep: Chocolate, Caramel, Marshmallow, Whiskey & Bacon Bark

Monday, September 10, 2012

Chocolate, Caramel, Marshmallow, Whiskey & Bacon Bark


I'm going to stop saying that things have been busy or crazy or hectic, because I've realized that this is life's current {and future, I think} "normal", and therefore, it is no longer news. If I happen to have a week that is oddly calm or easy, I'll be sure to let you know.

The reason I'm telling you this {aside from the fact that I obviously like to ramble} is because several of you have asked me to share a particular recipe for a few weeks now, and though it's been my intention to live up to my promise and do so, I haven't gotten around to it. And so I've been riddled with guilt, especially because there is no excuse in keeping this kind of deliciousness from you.

It's sort of strange that I even tried this out to begin with considering the fact that it doesn't really fit my "food style". My little sister Mary, on the other hand, would be all over it.

See, Mary and I have very different taste when it comes to how we like our treats.

Here are a few examples:

Ice Cream
Mary's Preference: Cappuccino Fudge Blitz topped with chunks of cookie dough, Coco Puffs, & chocolate sprinkles.

My Preference: Vanilla bean gelato. In a cup.

Mary's Preference: Mint Chocolate Chip Cookie Crunch Frappucino

My Preference: Vanilla Latte {Chai Latte if I'm feeling fancy}

Mary's Preference: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough topped with Brownie topped with Oreos Topped with Brownie finished off with Chocolate Glaze

My Preference: Fudge Brownie

Frozen Treats

Mary's Preference: Blue Raspberry Slurpee

My Preference: Banana-Pineapple Smoothie

There's nothing wrong with either preference. My tastes are just a little more "vanilla", if you will.

That's why I was so surprised when this particular recipe appealed to me. {But let's be real, here. I think the whiskey might have had something to do with it.} ;)

A layer of semi-sweet chocolate topped with a blanket of caramel, smothered with {whiskey infused} melted marshmallow, and then finished off with more chocolate & crumbled bacon. Yes... bacon.

I don't know what got into me when I decided that I must make it immediately... and then top my Chocolate-Whiskey Cupcakes with shards of it. Over the top. So unlike me.

I guess sometimes you  have to  take a cue from your little sister and let your taste buds take a walk on the wild side. ;)

Chocolate, Caramel, Marshmallow, Whiskey & Bacon Bark
 adapted from recipe found at  Whiskey Disks, but originally from Endless Simmer

1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups mini-marshmallows
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon whiskey
Approximately 25 caramels, unwrapped
2-3 strips of crisp bacon

Prepare an 8x8 inch pan by lining with parchment or foil sprayed thoroughly with non-stick cooking spray. {Create flaps that hang over edges for easy removal.}  Set aside.

In a medium microwave-safe bowl, heat semi-sweet chocolate chips in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth. {Be careful not to scorch, even when it looks like it's not fully melted it will continue to melt as you stir, so err on the side of caution.}

Pour about half of melted chocolate into prepared pan and smooth evenly with a silicone or offset spatula. Place in freezer to harden, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, place marshmallows, butter, and whiskey in a microwave-safe bowl and heat on high for about 45 seconds. {Keep an eye on it, marshmallows will swell and try to escape the bowl!} Stir and return to microwave for about another 45 seconds. Stir until smooth and elastic.

Pour onto set chocolate layer and, working quickly, smooth evenly. {If you're not using a silicone spatula, you may want to spray whatever you are using with cooking spray so that you don't have a sticky mess to deal with.}

Return to freezer and freeze for another 15 minutes.

Clean marshmallow bowl {or don't, it's really up to you}, and place unwrapped caramels into it. Heat for about 45 seconds, then stir, and continue heating in 30 second intervals until melted and smooth.

Pour over marshmallow layer and spread evenly. {And quickly! It will cool fast.}

Return to freezer for 15 more minutes.

Reheat remaining chocolate until warm and smooth and pour over caramel layer. Smooth evenly and, while still wet, sprinkle with crumbled bacon. Pat bacon crumbles down lightly so that they stick to chocolate.

Freeze for a final 15-30 minutes or until completely set.

When ready to cut, remove bark by gently pulling on foil flaps, then carefully peel foil from hardened chocolate. Cut into pieces with a sharp knife.

{Keep refrigerated. Bark becomes slightly gooey & floppy at room temp.}


Devon | The Food Bitch Blog said...

I seriously cannot get over how INSANELY good this looks & sounds.

Katie Mar said...

i LOVE these! the ingredient list is awesome!
and your photos are beautiful.

Patricia @ Brownies for Dinner said...

Holy cow, I need to try this! Thanks for sharing the recipe. I love how simple it looks, although that just makes it dangerous... :)

The Kitchen Prep said...

@Devon - Thanks! I highly recommend them for an easy & different treat or gift! :)

@Katie - Thank you, Katie! The original recipe called for more steps {homemade caramel, etc.}, so I like this simplified version, too.

@Patricia - You're welcome! It is pretty simple {especially with the aid of a microwave to speed up the process!}, though a little messy. Totally worth it though, and definitely dangerous! :)

marla said...

Love this recipe! Will be linking back to this in my upcoming post :)

The Kitchen Prep said...

@Marla - Wonderful! Will keep an eye out for it. :) Thanks for stopping by!

Amanda said...

This might be going in with my husband for their holiday party, yum!!

Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom said...

oh my goodness! I LOVE these. . you are right, sometimes you do need to indulge a little. . and let your taste buds go crazy! Love this!

Tara Quashnick said...

I know this is probably a tough question, but about how many people would one batch "feed" as a gift? I'd like to make it for about 27 people total, so I'm thinking about making 5 batches. Just wondering if you have any insight. Thanks!

Dianna M. said...

@Tara - Hmm... that IS a tough question! It depends on how much you want to give each person, how big you cut each piece, etc. I'd say that 1 recipe makes 4 VERY generous gifts, or 8 decently sized ones... each person would probably get about 6-8 pieces in that case. It also depends on how you package them. I'm sorry if that isn't much help! But I do think you're on the right track with 5 batches. :)

anashenwrath said...

This looks so insanely good! I was thinking of making to wrap and include in gift bags. But "floppy and gooey at room temp" makes me think they won't travel/sit well?

Dianna M. said...

@anashenwrath - I'd definitely keep it as cold as possible. If it's going to be at room temp for a long period of time, they'll probably get messy. You could also make your own caramel in place of melting the wrapped kind and cook it to a harder stage to give them a little more support, if that makes sense!

Anonymous said...

How long do these keep for?

Dianna M. said...

@Anonymous - That's a good question! I would guess 1 week+ if kept refrigerated... but honestly, I doubt they would be around that long. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Dianna, thanks so much for posting this recipe! I recently tried making it but had some trouble when I cut it. The top layer of chocolate separated from the caramel. Do you have any suggestions?

Dianna M. said...

@Anonymous - Hmm... I'm not sure why that would happen! Was it right out of the fridge when you tried cutting it? The only thing I can think of is that all the layers solidified a bit too much. Next time, maybe try letting it sit out at room temp for about 15-20 minutes before cutting, that might help the layers settle and not be too brittle. Does that make sense? I'm sorry it didn't work out! I hope you'll try it again and let me know if it works better. :)

Anonymous said...

I had just taken it out of the freezer so it was pretty solid. Next time I make it I'll let it sit for a bit before cutting into it. Thanks for your help!

Samantha S. said...

I was going to make these tonight, but am considering making them without the marshmallow... is there any reason that this wouldn't work?


Dianna M. said...

@Samantha S. - I don't see why it wouldn't! I think the marshmallow makes for a nice cushiony layer between the chewy caramel & the chocolate, but it should still taste great without it. :)

Cara Reid said...

How long will this keep? Would it still be good after a few days?

Dianna M. said...

@Cara Reid - As long as it's refrigerated, it should keep for a while. It should definitely last more than just a few days, probably closer to a week and a half or so... unless it's all gobbled up before then! :)

Kay M. said...

This was a wonderful recipe; thank you for sharing it! The bacon bits did remind me of a salted caramel type of flavor, in a more bold way. It was an amazing dessert!

Ben Sargent said...

I just made this. This is fan flipping tastic! Just down right freaking awesome. I had a mouthgasm.

Dianna M. said...

@Ben - Haha! So glad to hear you enjoyed it so much! ;)

Marissa said...

Looks amazing, something to make for my husband for sure! My question is dose 1 tablespoon of whiskey give enough flavor? I clicked on your Whiskey Discs link and see they used 1/4 cup, why the lesser amount for you? I want to make sure he can really taste the whiskey...thank you!

Dianna M. said...

@Marissa - I haven't made these in a while and I can't remember how strong the whiskey taste is, to be honest! I'm pretty certain it's detectable but you can always add a little bit or even add a bit to the caramel layer as well as the marshmallow layer. Just be careful not to add too much or you might make the caramel too runny. Hope that helps!

Greg Howe said...

I just wanted to thank you for this amazing recipe, I made it for a New Years party and met my girlfriend there who was impressed by my ability to make it (I did show her the website) being the nerds we are we've modified it using Doctor Who ice trays for chocolate caramel whiskey marshmallow bacon TARDIS and Daleks. We've also switched to caramel sauce since they are quite large and the caramel gets hard to chew

Dianna M. said...

@Greg Howe - Thanks so much for the message, Greg! I'm so glad the recipe helped to seal the deal with your gal & I love that you two have customized it to make it your own! Best wishes!

Jocasta Lousia Upton said...

hello how long does this keep for im planning to make the brittle the week before i make the cup cakes due to time constraints??? is this okay?

Dianna M. said...

@Jocasta - I think that should work just fine. Just keep the brittle refrigerated and well-covered {or in an airtight container} until ready to use.

Jocasta Lousia Upton said...

oh also can i use Carnation Caramel??? will it make a huge difference?

Dianna M. said...

@Jocasta - I'm not sure what Carnation Caramel is like! If it's too runny or liquid, it will not hold together the layers of chocolate. Whichever type you choose needs to be able to hold its shape when refrigerated. Remember that when it is brought to room temperature, it will be even more loose, so choose carefully. :) Good luck!

Anonymous said...

have you got a whiskey fudge

Anonymous said...

the second part of the chocolate do you melt it again In mico-wave again

SLU / AmC said...

Next time I think I'll make it without the marshmallow, and add the butter and whiskey straight to the caramel. All the marshmallow did was add stickiness and sugar, neither of which seem necessary.

But I can attest that 12-year-old Caol Ila works well in it!

Anonymous said...

I just made this to bring in to my office tomorrow. Swapped out Glenfiddich for whiskey, and added extra bacon between the marshmallow and caramel. Thanks so much for such a great recipe!

Ashley said...

Can you make this without the whiskey or do you have to replace the whiskey with water or something else?

Dianna M. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dianna M. said...

@Ashley - I think it would turn out just fine if you replaced the whiskey for the same amount of water. Let me know if you try it!

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