Commercial almond bark comes in either vanilla or chocolate flavors and is meant for melting and for incorporating into dessert recipes. You can eat this almond bark out-of-hand, but because it contains artificial ingredients for flavoring and for ease-of-melting, it tastes less rich than the homemade version.
Homemade almond bark, with high-quality chocolate, roasted almonds and real butter, makes a dessert fit for a special occasion when you break it apart into pieces and serve it on dessert plates.
A microwave makes short work of melting almond bark for dipping. Microwave for 1 minute per cup of candy and then in 10 second intervals, stirring after each time period until the almond bark is completely smooth. Use the melted confection for these treats either to coat them or as a dipping sauce served on the side:
- Cake balls
- Pretzel sticks
- Snack mix pieces
- Apple slices
For holidays, roll dipped cookies and candies in colored sugar sprinkles, creating special effects in red, white and blue for the Fourth of July or red, white and green for Cinco de Mayo.
Melted almond bark substitutes for melted chocolate in recipes on a one-to-one basis. Use it for flavoring cakes, cookies, candies, brownies, or chocolate or vanilla frosting. Some specific ideas include:
- Placing a square of almond bark in the center of thumbprint cookies instead of using other candy
- Pouring the melted chocolate into a cooked pie crust before adding a banana, coconut or chocolate cream filling
- Making chocolate-covered peanut butter and cracker sandwich cookies
You have plenty of options when it comes to decorating cakes with almond bark.
- Sculpt whimsical shapes, from trains to flowers to stars, by carving a block of almond bark with a kitchen paring knife, then nestling it into the cake frosting..
- Shave chocolate or vanilla curls from the bark using a vegetable peeler and strew them randomly over a frosted cake.
- Melt the candy and pour it onto templates of numbers or shapes you've drawn on wax paper. Place a lollipop stick in the melted chocolate to help stand the shape up when you insert it into a cake.
Use either white or chocolate almond bark as a sticking agent to create gingerbread houses, cement candy onto a gingerbread house or make candy nests from either shredded coconut or chow mein noodles.