What's chocolate ganache? You've probably seen scads of references to it in recipes and food writing. It's the basic tool of the chocolate baker and confectioner: cream and chocolate. Here are just a few of the many things you can make with ganache: - Thick icing for cakes
- Thin icing for cakes (shiny glaze)
- Thick, whipped cake fillings
- Chocolate sauce
The final use of the ganache is all in the proportion of chocolate to cream; if you master a few basic proportions you'll be whipping up chocolate truffles and glazes.
Remember that the quality of your ganache will depend greatly on the quality of your ingredients. It's only chocolate and cream and the taste of both will come through clearly. Here are the classic proportions for a few basic ganaches.
• Hard glaze: Three parts chocolate to one part cream, plus one or more tablespoons of corn syrup.
• Chocolate truffles: Two parts chocolate to one part cream.
• Cake filling: Equal parts chocolate and cream.
• Soft icing: One part chocolate to two parts cream.
For shinier glazes add a tablespoon of corn syrup. You can also add liquor, vanilla, and other flavorings.
How to Make Ganache
Chop the chocolate finely and put it in a heatproof bowl. Meanwhile, heat the cream in a small saucepan just until it's coming to a simmer and bubbles appear around the edges. Pour over the chopped chocolate and let sit for about five minutes. Stir to combine, then whisk rapidly until thoroughly combined and the chocolate is perfectly smooth.
For a filling, let the ganache cool until it is semi-hardened. Whip with electric beaters until fluffy.
Refrigerate any unused ganache and reheat gently on the stove in a double boiler.