A silky smooth chocolate concoction, chocolate ganache gives every dessert that extra kick with its decadent and indulgent taste. This simple and versatile chocolate based icing needs only 2 main ingredients, i.e. chocolate and cream, and can be used on any dessert, either as a simple drizzle, dipping for cupcakes, base coat on cakes for fondant covering or even as piped decoration on cakes.
The key to making chocolate ganache lies in understanding the proportion of chocolate to cream. The proportions used determine the consistency of the ganache and therefore is the single most important factor to understand in making ganache.
Another important aspect of chocolate ganache is the type and quality of chocolate used. Dark chocolate is my favourite, but this can always be substituted with milk chocolate and white chocolate.
Temperature is another factor. Since chocolate is one of the main ingredients, surrounding temperature plays an important part is ensuring the consistency of the ganache remains as it is intended to. I have tried using ganache on a number of occasions as a base coat on my cakes before covering them with fondant. It works fine when I use it in an air conditioned room, but when I bring the cake out to room temperature, the ganache looses its consistency. This is an issue particularly when ganache is used for base coat on cakes before fondant covering. One way to tackle this would be to work in an air conditioned room.
250g fresh cream
250g cooking chocolate
Chop cooking chocolate into small pieces and place it in a heatproof bowl. Leave aside.
Place the whipping cream in a pan. Double boil until the cream is well heated up and small bubbles start forming on the sides of the pan. Do not boil the cream.
Remove cream from heat and pour into the chopped chocolate. Mix with a spatula until chocolate has melted.
Cool the ganache before pouring over a cake. Smoothen with a palate knife.
The ratio of cream to chocolate in the recipe above is 1:1. In this proportion, the ganache will be in a pourable consistency when it is just slightly warm and thickens to a smooth spreadable consistency when completely cooled down. This consistency is perfect for piping work.
Only add chocolate into the heated cream mixture once the cream has been removed from heat, or else the ganache will be runny and will not thicken properly. Also, to ensure the chocolate melts well and consistently, chop it into small piece. That way, the heat from the cream will be able to melt the chocolate quickly.