Chocolate is a food group. Or so says my mother. I tend to agree.
And in addition to being a welcome addition to your tastebuds and mental sanity, chocolate can be a healthy addition to your lifestyle if you head on over to the dark side and select one that doesn’t have too much added sugar or icky preservatives. I believe that once you get into dark chocolate you don’t go back. It’s just richer and more satisfying. Maximum “mmm” per bite sort of thing. My favorite chocolate EVER is Mast Brothers. That stuff is on another level. It’s $8-9 a bar. And before I tried it I wondered why people would spend that much on one bar of chocolate. After a single bite I instantly understood why they did such a thing and became one of them.
I don’t think I go a single day without eating chocolate. I always need a fix after dinner. And dark chocolate is a great source of antioxidants and has even been shown to improve blood flow and circulation. Which is important as the weather gets colder and colder around these parts.
Not to mention that chocolate goes well with basically everything. My favorite is with nuts. And dried fruit. But sometimes it’s also fun to do something a little different with chocolate and taste and appreciate it in a new light. So when presented with the October challenge for Recipe Redux to create a recipe that incorporate a spice that tends to sit around in cabnets without frequent use, I instantly thought of this chocolate-anise bark that my mom made around the holidays last year. It was epic; not so epic is when Sasha tried to eat it. Luckily she survived, as did the legend of the marriage of chocolate + anise.
Anise is plain awesome in my opinion. I feel like it’s one of those flavors you either love or you don’t. I’m on team love. It tends to show up here and there around the holidays, but it’s licorsey, spicy/sweet taste is really one to be celebrated all year long. I encourage you to peer all the way back into your spice cabinet, blow the dust off your anise shaker, and make this bark. It’s incredible….