December 05, 2010

Bing Bars

Twin Bing Bars are made by the Palmer Candy Company in  Sioux City, Iowa.  They're one of my favorite treats.  The only other candy that comes even close to their flavor is the Cherry Mash, which seems to have a lot more distributors. 

 I like Bing Bars  about a million times better than Cherry Mash, though, and every December when my handbell and vocal choirs have their annual Christmas Party, I make my own version.  I tried to bring something else one year, and more than one musician expressed their disappointment.  So now I just bring it every time.

Bing Bars

8 ounces               salted cocktail peanuts
1 12-ounce bag     semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup                 chunky peanut butter
1 16-ounce tub     cherry frosting
1 jar                     maraschino cherries, drained

Spray a glass 9x13 pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Put the peanuts in a food processor and use the pulse setting until the peanuts look like large crumbs.  If you go too far, you'll end up with peanut butter, so be careful not to overprocess! 

Place the chocolate chips in a heat-resistant bowl and microwave until chips are melted.  Here's my procedure, since microwaves can vary in their wattage:  Heat for 1 minute, then stir;  then continue heating in 30-second intervals until chips melt as you stir.  Remove from microwave and add peanut butter.  Stir until peanut butter melts.  Add peanut bits and stir again.  Spread the mixture into the greased glass pan, and put the pan in the refrigerator for a couple of hours.

Drain the liquid from the maraschino cherries, and put the fruit on some paper towels to thoroughly drain.  Change out the paper towels after about an hour- you really want the cherries to be completely dry. 

When the chocolate mixture has completely chilled, frost with the cherry frosting.  Slice into small portions (this is why you need a glass pan) with a sharp knife. 

You can either use a scissors to slice the dry maraschino cherries in half, and top each piece with a cherry half, or you can use the scissors to cut the cherries into small pieces to sprinkle on top of the frosted chocolate.

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