Nutty Clusters

Cook’s notes: No baking required. These almond bark clusters combine sweet and salty flavors with crunchy and soft textures. They are a nice addition to the holiday cookie platter. Note: One cup of chocolate chips equals 6 ounces.

1 cup slivered almonds
2 heaping cups puffed rice cereal (such as Rice Krispies)
1 cup dry roasted peanuts
1 cup miniature marshmallows
3 cups white chocolate chips – 1.5 x 12-oz bags (I like NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Premier White Morsels)
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

Line 2 or more rimmed cookie sheets with wax paper.

Place almonds in a dry skillet and warm over medium-high heat, stirring often, until they are toasted.

In a large bowl, combine the toasted almonds, cereal, peanuts, and marshmallows. Stir well to combine.

Heat the chocolate chips and peanut butter in a saucepan over low heat until melted, stirring often.

Pour the melted chocolate over the nut and cereal mixture. Stir well to combine.

Using a teaspoon scoop, drop mounds of the mixture on wax paper and let dry. You may wish to refrigerate the clusters for 20 minutes until firm. Package in an airtight container.

Makes a large batch (at least 8 cups of mixture).

Source: Adapted from a recipe at http://www.jennylovesfood.com/?p=259. Tips on melting chocolate: see http://www.ehow.com/how_4514814_melt-chocolate-double-broiler-microwave.html.

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