A while back, I was making truffles. I finished the batch with about half a pan of chocolate left. Never being one to waste, I rushed to the pantry and tried to improvise. Amid the boxes of Kraft, cans of soup, and 3 open containers of peanut butter, I found my inspiration….Nerds!
Pushed to the back of the pantry was our leftover Halloween candy, including 15-20 small boxes of fun-sized Nerds. I tore open the boxes, dumped the colorful contents into the chocolate, add some sprinkles for color, and threw it in the freezer. Simple, easy, and if it didn’t workout…no big deal. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
I never expected that this thrown-together mixture would actually be a masterpiece.
Sour, sweet, fruity, crunchy, chocolaty…everything just blended together so well. The Nerdy bark was exciting, with all its flavors, colors, and crunchy texture. It wasn’t the most sophisticated treat I had ever made…and I think that’s what I liked most!
It was fun!
Nerdy chocolate bark was great on its own, but I wanted to think of a way to make it even better. Sour, sweet, fruit, crunch…there are already so many sensations. Why not add more?
Why not add salt?
Introducing: Nerdy Pretzel Bark!
10 oz. pretzels
1/3 cup melted butter
2 tbsp. white granulated sugar
15-20 boxes of fun-sized Nerds (or 1 large box of Nerds)
1 brick of white chocolate candy coating
1-2 tbsp of shortening
Food coloring (optional)
Start by pre-heating the oven to 350 degrees and chopping the pretzels in the blender.
Melt the butter, and add it to the blender. Add the sugar, and mix the blended contents well.
Press the contents of the blender onto a cookie sheet, forming a chunky pretzel crust. Bake the crust for 8-10 minutes, ensuring it does not burn. The crust will be loose, but the hardened chocolate will hold it together later.
In you are using fun-sized boxes of Nerds, open the boxes and dump the contents into a bowl. Now it’s time to melt the coating! You can use a double boiler, however it is not necessary. I break the candy coating in half, include 1 tsp of shortening, and melt it on the lowest heat on my stove. I stir my chocolate constantly, and although it is tedious, it is important to watch for scorching.
If I notice the chocolate starting to scorch, I add an extra teaspoon of shortening. You can add as much as it takes to make the chocolate smooth, but be careful not to add too much! If you are adding food coloring, add your desired amount of color once the coating is melted. Dump in the Nerds, stir well, and then pour the coating mixture over your pretzel bark. Try to keep the layer as thin as possible! Add sprinkles, decorations, or any other decorations you like.
Try not to disturb the pretzel crust too much when spreading the coating around. It’s hard not to get any pretzels mixed in, but the less that get mixed in, the more finished your treats well look in the end.
It’s alright if the bark doesn’t look perfect at this point, it gets fixed up later. Also, if the coating doesn’t cover the entire crust, no worries!
Place the bark in the freezer for about half an hour (until it is firm and breakable). When the bark is solid, remove it from the freezer, break it into chunks, and use a sharp knife to fashion the bark into bite-sized pieces. You can discard of the buttery leftover crust from the sides….or you can eat it.
I made my Nerdy Pretzel bark into a seasonal treat using Valentine’s Nerds and pink food coloring. However, the color combinations are practically endless. This crunchy treat is sure to be a hit at all times of the year!
I hope you enjoy the treat as much as I do!
All the Best,