Bridge Mix Bars

This is my version of what I recall as a holiday snack treat remixed into a bar that can be enjoyed all year long.  I remember as a child, when my mother used to buy the Brach's Bridge Mix - so delicious and fun.  I recently saw a version of this made by Anne Thornton and thought I would play with the recipe to suit my own tastes.  For the caramel sauce, I use the bottled caramel from Starbucks as it is thicker than ice cream topping at room temperature which will ensure it does not run all over.

2 lbs. milk chocolate
3 cups pretzels, chopped or chunked
3 cups roasted and salted, deluxe nut mix 
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup toffee bits
1/2 cup caramel sauce
12 - 16 oz. bittersweet chocolate
1 tbsp. peanut or canola oil
sea salt for sprinkling

In a large bowl mix pretzel pieces, nuts, cherries and toffee bits - stirring until they are well combined.  Melt milk chocolate in a double boiler and when fully melted, pour over pretzel mix, stirring to combine thoroughly. Pour into a 9X13 pan that has a piece of parchment draped over the long sides hanging over so you can pull the final treat out of the pan.  Use your spatula to press mixture down evenly across pan.  Drizzle caramel sauce over mixture evenly and place in refrigerator to chill for one hour.

Melt bittersweet chocolate with oil in a double boiler and when fully melted, pour over chilled treat - sprinkling with sea salt to your desired liking.  Place back into refrigerator for one more hour.  Enjoy!

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