How To Make Ganache: Nothing But Ratios

So you want/need to make ganache do you?  Well it is a relatively easy thing to make.  You just need chocolate and heavy cream, the magic is in the ration!  Which ration you choose will depend on how you will use it.

1:2 Ration, 1 Part Chocolate to 2 Parts Heavy Cream

This will result in a thin pourable ganache. Best used as chocolate sauce to pour over your ice cream.  This is too thin to use for pouring over like a cake say, as it won’t really make a coating. 

1:1 Ration, 1 Part Chocolate to 1 Parts Heavy Cream

This will result in a thick ganache that is spreadable and somewhat pourable.  Best used for using as cake filling or to glaze a cake.  You will want to let this cool to room temperature before you will want to use this as a glaze or layer filling to give it some time to set up a little. This is too thin to use for truffles say but to thick to pour like a chocolate sauce. 

2:1 Ration, 2 Part Chocolate to 1 Parts Heavy Cream

This will result in a solid very thick ganache.  This is what you want to use for making truffles or for filling something more sturdy like a cookie sandwich. You won’t want to use this to fill a cake as it might tear the cake when you try to spread it and it will definitely not pour like a glaze.

How To Store Ganache

So if you make ganache and have too much or want to make it ahead of time that is perfectly fine.  If you will be storing it in the refrigerator, pour it into a glass container, cover with plastic wrap pressed to the surface of the ganache and then place in the refrigerator.  There are two schools of thought: 1) you can keep it that way for a few weeks and it is safe, OR 2) you can keep it till the expiration date on the cream you use.  The other option is just to freeze it up to 1 month.  Either way, when you are ready to use again let it come to room temperature again.  

How To Reheat Ganache

If you need to reheat the ganache for any reason, you will want to do so slowly.  In the microwave for 15 second intervals until it reaches your desired constancy. Or in a double boiler over simmering water for 5 minutes stirring regularly to keep it from burning. 

What To Do With Left Over Ganache

Depending on the type of ganache you made you have some options.  

If you made a thin ganache you can use is as chocolate syrup adding it to ice cream, or make hot cocoa, or make some chocolate dipped cookies!  Or heat it up a little and voila! Chocolate Fondue. 

If you made a thick ganache you can thin it out with some more cream and whip it to make a chocolate mousse.  Use it to top some cupcakes or fill a cookie sandwich.

If you make the thickest ganache and find you have leftovers, why not make some truffles by making balls and rolling them in cocoa powder or stir in some nuts or something else and call it fudge! 

How To Make Flavored Ganache

If you want to enhance the flavor of your ganache you can start with the simplest addition, 1/8th Teaspoon salt.  

If you want to add a liqueur like Grand Marnier, Bailey’s or Kalhua, 1 or 2 ounces of the cream with the liqueur of your choice. 

If you want to add peanut butter, simply add a few tablespoons to the chocolate before you heat it.  Maybe Nutella would be a nice addition also.

If you want to use flavored extracts or other things like vanilla beans, espresso powder, orange peel, spices, tea, or coffee beans, you might want to consider flavoring the cream.  While the cream is heating add the flavoring item to the cream and let steep for 10 minutes.  If it is something like a cinnamon stick or tea bag then of course remove it.  Just saying… 

Now, How To Make Ganache 

1:2 – Thin Pourable Ganache – Yields 300g/12oz/1 +2/3 Cup

  • 100g/4 oz./ 2/3rd Cup Chococlate of your choice, chopped or in chips
  • 200ml/8 ozs./1 cup Heavy Cream

1:1 – Thick Spreadable Ganache – Yields 200g/8oz/.8 Cup

  • 100g/4 oz./ 2/3rd Cup Chococlate of your choice, chopped or in chips
  • 100ml/4 oz./ 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream

2:1 – Solid Ganache – Yields 300g/12oz/1.8 Cups

  • 200g/8 oz./ 1 +1/3rd Cup Chococlate of your choice, chopped or in chips
  • 100ml/4 oz./ 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream

Procedure

  1. Place chopped chocolate or chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl
  2. Heat the cream.  Don’t forget to add flavoring if you choose. Option 1: In the microwave, place cream in a microwave safe bowl and heat for 1 or 2 minutes until very hot!  Then CAREFULLY pour over the chocolate and let sit for 10 minutes before whisking together.  Option 2: On the stove, pour cream in to a small saucepan and bring to a boil then CAREFULLY pour over the chocolate and let sit for 10 minutes before whisking together. (If not all the chocolate melts, no problem! Place it in the microwave for 10 seconds and then stir.  Repeat until all the chocolate is melted)
  3. For glaze, sauce, or dip then you are ready to go.  Just let it come to room temperate before use. 
  4. For frosting, let set in the refrigerator for 4 hours to setup.
  5. For truffles or fudge, let it cool completely in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour to setup. 

Tips

  • For best results, get out your scale and measure the ingredients by weight.  Conversion to the volume method, such as cups are difficult and not as accurate.  
  • Also remember that if you need more or less ganache you will want to adjust the amounts or cream and chcolate to meet your needs.
  • Finally product may vary depending on your particular conditions.

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