Heavenly Chocolate Ganache
Chocolate Ganache is amazingly versatile in baking. It's indulgent taste and rich velvety texture has lots of uses. Ganache can be transformed as a glaze, poured over any cake as a frosting/ icing , truffles, piped into canapes, sauce for ice cream, filling for patisserie, topping for cookies, chocolate fondue, chocolate coating, chocolate mousse, chocolate drinks and more. Usually, Ganache is made with equal proportions of cream and chocolate. But, I use little butter that gives the ganache a desirable shiny texture. The taste of the final product depends on the chocolate used. Hence, it is essential to use a good quality chocolate to make gorgeous ganache.
Makes 1 cup
4 oz Baking chocolate *I used Godiva bittersweet baking chocolate. You can also use semi sweet, dark or milk chocolate.
1/2 cup Heavy whipping cream *For vegan version, use coconut cream concentrate
1/2 tablespoon Unsalted butter *For vegan version use a neutral tasting oil
1/2 tablespoon Liqueur or 1/4 teaspoon of flavoring like vanilla or 1 tablespoon of espresso *This is optional. For a child friendly version, do not use liqueur
Chop the chocolate bar into small pieces. Small pieces melt better than large ones. I chopped the chocolate bar roughly. Grated chocolate is recommended. To save time, you may also use chocolate chips instead of a baking bar.
This step is optional. Set aside the butter. I use sweet cream unsalted butter. Softening the butter is not required. You can also use a neutral tasting oil like grapeseed oil or vegetable oil. Adding extra fat gives a shiny texture when poured on a cake or as a fruit dip. If you're making a ganache for other baking purpose, you can skip the butter or oil. Less fat, less calories!
Measure the heavy cream in a cup. If you use a good quality chocolate and it taste good by itself, you can use light cream, half and half or fresh milk for a reduced fat and thinner ganache. Avoid using bland or stale chocolate that tastes like mud. No matter what, It sure spoils the final outcome.
Heat the cream and butter in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a bare boil. Remove from heat once it starts bubbling. Take care not to over heat the mixture. Too much heat gets it burnt or can curdle the cream. This mixture should be hot enough to melt the chocolate.
Place the chopped chocolate in a medium sized bowl. Remove the butter and cream mixture from heat. Pour immediately over the bowl of chopped chocolate. Let it stand for about 3-5 minutes to soften the chocolate. Stir gently and cover all the chocolate.
Whisk until completely mixed. Continue whisking till you get a glossy and velvety ganache. At this point you may add the liqueur or flavor, mix well. I don't add any additive to my ganache as I like plain chocolate. Use it immediately or store for later use. Let it cool slightly before pouring over the cake. The longer it sits outside, the thicker it gets. So plan ahead it's use. Ganache can be stored in the refrigerator for a week. This freezes well for up to 3 months.