Ganache is a type of icing or glaze that is made by using warm heavy cream to melt chocolate.
The chocolate pieces that are melted by the warm cream melt slowly, therefore they must be in small pieces.
The smaller the pieces of chocolate, the more likely the ganache will become smooth and melt together to create a homogeneous mixture.
Is ganache hard or soft?
Ganache can either be hard or soft depending on the ratio used of heavy cream to chocolate. Ganache is hard when the ratio is 1:1. Ganache is soft when the ratio is 1:2. Soft ganache is typically used to coat brownies or cakes. When you bite into the cake or brownie the ganache is soft moveable. Hard ganache is typically used for chocolate tarts or éclair topping.
What are the ratios of Ganache
There are a couple of different ratios ganache uses to create a harder or softer ganache, depending on what you’re using it for.
Chocolate ganache tarts use a ratio of 2:3 or 1:1 heavy cream to chocolate. Chocolate ganache tarts vary whether they are baked or left to solidify. Ganache does not have to be baked in the oven, this is a personal choice for your tart. Ganache tarts typically have butter added to them at the end to add a richness and smoothness to the chocolate tart.
Chocolate ganache for topping brownies is a bit of a softer ganache. It will not harden, so when you bite into it, it has a bit of a liquid texture to it. Since the chocolate ganache does not harden, it’s easy to cut brownies once the ganache has set. You can place the ganache and brownies in the fridge or freezer to set the ganache in place for 20-30 minutes.
Chocolate ganache for topping brownies uses a ratio of 1:2 heavy cream to chocolate. It’s one of the lowest ratios you can use for chocolate ganache.
How to use ganache
You can use ganache in many different ways, including:
- filling macarons
- glazing cakes or cupcakes
- dipping fruit in
- topping for eclairs
- filling for crepes
- topping for brownies
- topping for ice cream
- topping for cheesecake
- Ganache can be used by adding it to a piping bag, fitted with a small or large piping tip, depending on your project.
- Gently squeeze the ganache out of the piping bag onto your creation. If you’re wanting a drip ganache look, pipe right on the edge of the cake so it gently drips down the cake.
- Let the ganache set in the fridge for 2-3 hours.
- Ganache dessert is ready to serve.
Does ganache harden at room temperature
Ganache will stay hard at room temperature, but it should set in the refrigerator. Typically a ratio of 1:2 ganache will not harden at room temperature. But ratios of 2:3 or 1:1 will remain hard once set in the refrigerator.
How long does ganache take to harden
Ganache takes 2-4 hours to harden in the refrigerator. You can set ganache faster by placing it in the freezer for 30 min – 1 hour.
How to store ganache cake
Ganache cake should be store in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. It’s best eaten within 1-2 days. Ganache shouldn’t be left out of the fridge for more than 2 days. The cake will stay better in the refrigerator as well; it slows down the aging process which lets it remain fresher for longer than if it was at room temperature.
Can ganache be frozen
Ganache can be frozen for up to 1 month and then it should be used. Thaw the ganache in the refrigerator overnight, and then mix well to loosen up the ganache before using.
Does ganache need to be refrigerated
Ganache can sit at room temperature for 1-2 days. Ganache can be refrigerated and used for up to 1 week.
Whipped Ganache vs Mousse
Whipped ganache is made by making ganache using warm heavy and cream chocolate. Once the ganache has cooled for about an hour, the ganache is whipped on high until light and fluffy. Once it’s beaten and becomes similar to an icing, it’s ready to use.
Mousse is made a couple of different ways. One way to make mousse is by melting chocolate, then cooling it down a bit and adding egg yolks for richness to the chocolate. Whip the heavy cream, and mix it together with the chocolate. Then fold the egg whites into the chocolate mousse.
Ganache and mousse use similar ingredients, but their makeups are quite different. Mousse is always going to be similar to a pudding consistency, whereas whipped ganache sets hard.
Whipped ganache is used for icing foods like cupcakes, whereas chocolate mousse in itself is a dessert on its own.
Ganache vs Frosting
Ganache is thinner than frosting.
Frosting is much thicker, and needs to be piped, or spread onto a dessert.
Ganache simply is poured onto a dessert which is easier, but can also be messy if it drips too much over the sides.
Ganache is a rich flavor, whereas frosting is more of a sugary flavor.
Frosting is best used for vanilla cakes, whereas ganache is a better fit for chocolate or mocha cakes.
Which is better ganache or buttercream
Ganache is going to give a cake a beautiful finish, and you can use it to drip the ganache down the cake. Ganache is rich, and more of a shocking chocolate taste.
Buttercream is more sugary, and does not have the chocolate shock to it.
Ganache will give your cake top the perfect finish by simply pouring it on top of your cake.
Whereas, buttercream needs to be piped or spread evenly around the cake which is much more time consuming.
Buttercream is better as a flavor over ganache if you’re serving a lighter cake like vanilla cake, carrot cake, or lemon chiffon cake.
Ganache is better served on a chocolate cake, black forest cake, or mocha cake.