Glossary

Chocolate ganache

Pronounce it: gan – arsh

Chocolate ganache is a combination of chocolate and double cream that is simple to make, yet is one of the richest and most gratifying of treats to eat. It is the basis for chocolate truffles of all colours, and also makes the very best cake frosting, filling or icing imaginable. When cool, ganache frosting develops an outer crust over a velvety centre. Little is better.

Availability

Make it all year round.

Choose the best

Dark chocolate with a high cocoa-solids ratio gives the richest and most gratifying results. Milk chocolate and white chocolate versions will be correspondingly blander and sweeter. Alternating either of the latter with dark chocolate ganache, or with one another, opens up endless possibilities . . . 

Store it

Basically, make it and eat it.  The high fat content of both cream and chocolate means ganache, including truffles, will stay vibrant and fresh for a week or more if kept cool. It will slowly lose shine if kept in a warm atmosphere and the cream content can develop a cheesy taste, a sure warning that you have left it too long. A week or so in the fridge is fine in an airtight container.  

Cook it

For soft icing or a glaze, use one part by weight of dark chocolate to two of double cream.

For chocolate truffles, use two parts by weight (more or less according to preference) of chocolate to one of double cream. 8oz/250g chocolate to 1/2pint/300mls double cream gives an excellent texture. Shaping them like rugged black truffles straight from the soil is easier for the inexperienced.

For a cake filling or rich, thick icing, use equal weights of chocolate and double cream.

In all cases, add an extra 25% of cream when using white chocolate

Break the chocolate into small pieces and then heat the cream to below boiling point. Combine away from the heat and stir until even. Cool to room temperature before use, when it can be whisked for a lighter texture.

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