Jun 03 2013

How to Ganache Cakes Without Gnashing Your Teeth!

Posted in Uncategorised by
85 comments

Sometimes we just want to ganache one cake which is not part of a tier, if you’re like me and keep a massive stash of chocolate hidden away you'll probably wing it for the amount you need, if not ... Read on!

Ganache is so easy to make up and to have slightly too much or too little isn't really a big hardship, however for larger or different combination cakes it's good to have some idea on the amounts of chocolate and cream required.

I’ve pestered my long suffering hubby Howard to create a simple chart to help sort out ingredients for individual cakes and tiers, it may be that you will need slightly more or slightly less depending on the thickness of covering and filling you prefer.

MIWL-Ganache-Chart

Ganache Chart - by user 'madeitwithlove'

 

 

For a word compatible .docx download click here

 

The chart is based on amounts used in Paul’s tutorials for an 8 inch cake filled and covered, it takes into account the surface and filling area and is factored against the surface area of an 8 inch cake.

The ratio for dark chocolate to cream is the normal 2:1, I have used 3:1 ratio for both milk and white chocolate. Some sites will recommend 2.5:1 ratio for milk chocolate but from my personal experience milk chocolate takes longer to set than dark and should be treated the same as white chocolate, I’ve also noticed other sites say ganache should be whisked before filling and covering cakes, however whisking ganache can prevent it from setting firmly. Adding too much air into the mix will make it moussey and in some cases shorten the shelf life, airborne microbes will also be incorporated which could encourage mould growth. I feel, whisked ganache is best kept for making truffles and desserts, where a small amount of added glucose or alcohol will lengthen the shelf life for as much as a week, however, it’s up to individuals how they prefer to make up their ganache.

Medussas-bad-hair-day-640x480

Medusa's bad hair day - made by user 'madeitwithlove'

 

I hope you will find the chart useful. Happy baking and decorating everyone!

madeitwithlove

Comments

  1. Reply mtfhayes

    Thanks for this! I tried ganache for the first time last week and had real problem with it splitting. I followed the recipe and watched the video but it looked nothing like the nice smooth mixture Paul got. Can you help?

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hello TasteofCakes

      I’m glad it helps a little, it’s just a guide really, sometimes you may need a bit more/less. Thanks for your comment. x

  2. Reply madeitwithlove

    Hi mtfhayes

    I think everyone has a few problems when first trying to make ganache. Try sitting your boiled cream for a minute before adding to the chocolate. Let the heat of the cream reach the bottom of the chocolate and stir gently until combined. It looks a mess to begin with, but it will come together gradually. Don’t over mix, once it’s all combined that’s it! Have a peek here http://www.designer-cakes.com/questions?s=oily+ganache for information on how to fix split ganache. Practice with small quantities first so you’re not wasting too many ingredients, you’ll be fine next time. x

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Alisonwarn

      You’re welcome, glad it helps. Just bear in mind what I keep saying, you may need more/less depending how light or heavy handed you are with ganache. I don’t use as much as Paul does although the calculations have been worked out on the amounts he uses in the tutorials. x

  3. Reply norfolk

    Hi, this is great thanks will come in really handy, but im really confused about ganache. Paul uses it for covering and filling the cakes, the covering will go hard but what about the filling?

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Norfolk

      The ganache on the outside is exposed to the air and crusts over, it isn’t completely hard so there’s no snap to it, just enough to make a nice firm seal to keep the cake inside lovely and moist The ganache on the inside draws moisture from the cake and remains soft and fudgy. I know, it can get a bit confusing but it’s fine. x

  4. Reply gina

    Hi miwl, I just love the Medusa cake – but please can you tell me more about the decorations on top.

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Gina

      First my apologies for the tardy reply, I only saw your question late last night. The medusa cake is covered with tempered chocolate ganache and tempered chocolate decorations. The ‘hair’ is made by piping tempered chocolate on an acetate strip. Using a combed scraper make a line of chocolate covering the strip, twist the acetate and allow it to set. When set untwist the acetate to get the spiral decorations. The coloured spheres are made in half sphere moulds which have been smudged with powered colour mixed in melted cocoa butter. Only a tiny amount of each colour is needed. I use Mycryo powdered cocoa butter which is made by Callebaut and available from any chocolate supplier or on Amazon. You’ll need about half a teaspoon for each colour melted extremely gently in a small dish until liquid. Tempered chocolate is poured into each half sphere cavity, filling completely. Scrape clean and neaten the top and tap the mould on the work surface to disperse any air bubbles. Hold the mould in your hand and flip it over to tap out the excess chocolate, scrape the top of the mould clean while it is still upside down. Let the chocolate set and then de mould. The shapes should pop out cleanly and be nice and shiny if the chocolate was properly tempered. Lift each shape with forefinger and thumb and very gently melt the edges of the half spheres on a warm surface and stick them together to make a full sphere. You can warm a small swiss roll pan to melt the edges. To prevent finger marks on the shiny surface avoid handling the spheres too much.
      Making the ruffle which the decorations are sitting on is a little more difficult as it requires working quickly. You’ll need a marble slab which has to be frozen. Pour an even layer of tempered chocolate on the slab, using a wallpaper type scraper, scrape away from yourself to achieve pleates. Pinch in the middle to form a fan and place on the top of the cake. This is a very delicate decoration and will melt if held on to even for a few seconds, so speed is the essence. The cigarrette curl is made by placing an even layer of chocolate on a cool work top, do this with a pallet knife or scraper ( like a wall paper scraper), allow it to be touch dry, place your forefnger in the middle of the scraper and with a swift action scrape up the chocolate into a roll. It’s not difficult, just needs practice! For the chocolate shards follow Paul’s tutorial here http://www.designer-cakes.com/online-cake-decorating-courses/chocolate-transfer-cake and cut out rectangular blocks the same height as your cake. The six wheeled dough cutter or a ribbon cutter can be used to get even blocks, or if you have a straight hand you can cut them with a knife. Do this before the chocolate sets completely.
      I hope I haven’t made it sound too complicated. x

    • Reply Andy (Staff)

      Hi Gina, for some reason our spam checker hadn’t let the comment go through! Apologies for this you should be ok in the future 🙂

  5. Reply heatherdvds

    Youve made my cake covering so much easier. All I need you to do now is come and bake n ganache the cakes so I can just cover them in sugarpaste and decorate.
    Thank you so much.

  6. Reply lisa

    Hi just wondering how much ganache I would need to cover a 10 inch square cake WITHOUT filling? Would I half the amount above?
    Thank you

  7. Reply lisa

    Hi just wondering how much white chocolate ganache I would need to cover a 10 inch square cake WITHOUT filling? Would I half the amount above?
    Thank you

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hello Shellysugars

      If your cake is frozen leave it out at room temperature overnight. If your cake has been in the fridge allow it to come to room temperature for about half an hour so the condensation dries off and them apply the fondant. If your cake does not have too much condensation you don’t have to wait.

  8. Reply Sharon

    Hi there.

    I noticed in the videos that Paul always makes his ganache the day before he needs it, and leaves it to set in the fridge overnight. Is this mandatory? I just wonder if I can skip this step, and use theganache one it has cooled to room temperature. I don’t understand why you ned to refridgerate it, only to reheat it in the microwave the next day before use before you can use it.

    Thank you

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Sharon

      It isn’t mandatory, I don’t refrigerate my ganache. If you can get it to working consistency once it has cooled that’s fine. I think Paul just makes his up the night as part of his prep.

  9. Reply Monica

    Thanks for the chart! I understand the amounts are based on what is needed to fill and cover a cake. Is that for 3 layers of filling (4 cake layers with ganache between them all) and covering? or just one or two layers of filling? Thanks 🙂 Monica

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Monica

      I’m so sorry to have missed your comment. In answer to your question, the amounts are based on the way Paul fills and covers the tutorial cakes. Paul cuts his cakes in half. When I use the chart quantities I find the amounts sufficient for filling and covering three layers. However, I don’t fill my cakes as deeply as Paul but if you wanted to fill three or more layers increase your ganache by approximately 25% -30%, you may have a little left over but better that than not enough.

  10. Reply girlietow

    This table is fabulous! If I have a lot of unused ganache, can I freeze it, then bring it out and microwave it for another time?

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Girlietow

      Ganache can be frozen for up to 3 months. Store it wrapped in a freezer bag and then in an airtight plastic container so it doesn’t absorb any weird and wonderful smells from other foods. Defrost at room temperature, warm in the micro wave on medium/low temp in 20 second bursts at first, mix after ever warming and reduce the time down to a few seconds until you have a working consistency.

  11. Reply renemo

    Hi can I ask what percentage cocoa is the best for making ganache for both dark and milk chocolate? I am a complete novice so would it be easier for me to work with dark chic ganache? Would maybe have preferred milk as don’t want the cake to be too bitter but some things I’ve read on internet says milk is hard to work with. Thanks.

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Helo Renemo

      For dark chocolate ganache a palatable cocoa content would be 45-60%. Anything above that may not be to all tastes. The higher the cocoa content the more bitter the chocolate. Milk chocolate try and get 40-42% and white chocolate 26%. If you’re lucky you may be able to find 29-32%. White chocolate is not chocolate at all. It is combination of cocoa butter, milk solids and flavourings. Take more care with it because it burns very quickly.

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Mammyjuls

      Yes you can. Ganache can be made with any type of chocolate because it doesn’t need tempering for the application of filling and coat crumbing cakes.

  12. Reply Angela

    might be silly to ask, but I still use a liquid measuring cup for the cream right, or do I weigh the cream also? 🙂 Thanks

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Angela

      I’m so sorry to have missed your comment. In answer to your question, yes just weigh the cream. It’s more accurate to weigh it than use volume measure + it’s so much easier.

  13. Reply prin-parfait

    This chart is very useful.i’ve never tried ganache on my fondant,only buttercream.
    I’ll try little quantity at first as you said miwl.Thanx.

  14. Reply Anna

    Hi,

    I was just wondering if the cream was to be measure in ml or grams. The chart says ml but the total is in grams. Sorry I am a newbie and I also usually measure in cups and pounds, but I’m learning to convert!

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Anna

      I’m sorry for late reply, I’ve only just seen your question. It’s fine to measure the cream in gms, milk and cream measures are interchangeable between gms and mls. Hope this has clarified the instructions. x

  15. Reply Kirsten

    Hi, I need some help 🙁 I am always a bit hit and miss with my Genache! A lot of the time it just won’t set hard, other times it’s fine!! Any ideas? Maybe add more chocolate? Thanks

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Kirsten

      It depends a lot on the type of chocolate you’re using. Very dark chocolate sets much quicker because it contains more cocoa solids. Any chocolate which contains cocoa solids of 50% and over works well using the above chart. Milk chocolate doesn’t contain a lot of cocoa solids so try aiming for a cocoa content of approximately 40 – 45%. To make ganache use the same ratio chocolate to cream as in the above chart. White chocolate is not real chocolate, it is made up of milk solids, coco butter ( in good chocolate) vegetable oils and other products. Use the chart for quanitites, however if it doesn’t set during warm weather add more melted chocolate to the ganache. The ganache made from the above quantities is the type used for applications in the tutorials. If you need more help or information it may be better to post in Q & A for a quicker response here http://www.designer-cakes.com/questions.

      • Reply Decake

        Hi der,
        I usually hv dis habit of reading posts to c if my qt is already been answered for somebody Wid same prob.I came across dis post where u say mix equal ratios of choc n cream as in chart. But in d chart d ratio is 2:1 I.E.choc :cream. Confusion confusing..

        • Reply Danielle

          Hi Decake,

          Thank you for getting in touch.

          Yes to make ganache, we would suggest using the 2:1 ration of cream and chocolate. This chart helps you to work out how much cream and chocolate you would need depending on the size of the cake. So although it is 2:1 ratio, you will need to know how much double cream and how much chocolate you would need to make ganache for a specific cake size.
          I hope this clears things up a bit? Cheers! Danielle x

        • Reply madeitwithlove

          Hello DeCake

          I am sorry you have become confused about the ganache ratios. In my blog and chart I say to use 2:1 ratio for dark chocolate and 3:1 for milk and white. I’m not sure where in my blog, you have read about mixing equal quantities.

          Some ganache recipes, (depending on what it is to be used for), do ask for equal quantity ratio. This type of ganache is softer ganache and better used for fillings and sometimes for pouring.

          For the purposes of crumbcoating as seen in the tutorials, it is much better to make a firmer ganache. Firm ganache when set, gives sharper edges and a strong platform for laying sugarpaste (fondant) over.

          If you pop over to http://www.designer-cakes.com/questions/
          you’ll find a massive stash of information about ganache. All you have to do is ask your question or simply type ‘ganache’ in the searchbox.

          Hope my answer clarifies any confusion. See you in Q & A x

  16. Reply Murphy

    The cake recipe I will be using is good for a week or more, can you tell me if the ganache will stay good for that period of time also? I live in Scotland and it will be a December cake.

  17. Reply Frosted treats

    Thanks for this loveky chart. Can i post this on my facebook page so my fellow cakers. Can benifit as well . Thanks!!

    • Reply Danielle

      Hi Frosted Treats!

      We are so glad that this has helped you. Ofcourse, feel free to post this blog on your facebook! 🙂

      Thanks D x

  18. Reply Cassandra2015

    Im just about to make my first ever batch! The chart is fab as I have a kilo bag if choc so could work out exactly how much cream. Wish me luck!!

  19. Reply Cassandra2015

    Im just about to make my first ever batch! The chart is fab as I have a kilo bag of choc so could work out exactly how much cream. Wish me luck!!

  20. Reply NANCY Chinnock

    It would be more helpful to USA people is things were in pounds and oz. for measurement.

  21. Reply Marjorie

    Congratulations on your fantastic website. On the subject of ganache I can’t get cream above 35 percent fat in Crete, will this effect the ratio. I usually make it half and half but it is very stiff.

    • Reply Danielle

      Hi Marjorie, Thank you for getting in touch. I completely understand, 35% fat cream should be suitable enough! Let us know how you get on.
      Many thanks.
      Danielle x

  22. Reply Maddy

    Hello! I am from the USA and i need to know what kind of cream and chocolate do I use?

    • Reply Danielle

      Hi Maddy, as long as the chocolate has over 39-42% cocoa solids and the cream has over 36% fat content then you are good to go.
      I hope this helps:) D xxx

  23. Reply Obtenga su fresco New Balance Viola Argento

    Hi would you mind stating which blog platform you’re working with? I’m planning to start my own blog soon but I’m having a difficult time deciding between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something unique. P.S Apologies for being off-topic but I had to ask!

  24. Reply Decake

    Hi Made with love,
    Thanks for d chart. I use it as a guide. Bur den I saw Paul ‘s video where he is using dark choc to ganache d cake.but d proportions r not 2:1 as in d chart it’s Smthng like 1.4 :1. I.E. Choc: cream. M No way doubting ur expertise but I would like to clear my confusion over dis n really appreciate d chart.
    Thanks

  25. Reply Decake

    U hv answered me previously but M kind of confused again dat.. Do I need to make two batches of ganache 2:1 to cover d cake n 1:1 to fill d cake? If u c Paul uses 1600 gms of choc n 1127 of cream..it’s not 2:1 proportion.. It’s Smthng like 1.4:1 proportion. Help!!

  26. Reply madeitwithlove

    Hi Decake

    The chart is for covering and filling the sizes shown in the columns. Paul is using proportions for the size cakes he is covering and filling. He doesn’t tell us what size cakes he is covering so his amounts will not be the same as anyone else’s. I think that is what is confusing you. The chart shows for one cake of all the different sizes and different chocolates.
    You don’t have to make two lots of ganache. For dark chocolate use 2 part chocolate to 1 part cream, for milk or white chocolate use 3 parts chocolate to 1 part cream ration. The sizes shown are for one cake cut in half as Paul shows in his tutorials. If you read the information below Paul’s ganache tutorial he has linked in my ganache chart. If you are still uncertain please let me know how many cakes you wish to fill and cover and their sizes so that I can help you better.

  27. Reply Decake

    Hey made with love,
    Thanks for the prompt reply
    Ok well let me reframe my question. I m not confused Wid d chart n it’s qty to b used on d cakes.
    After looking Paul’s video to ganache d cakes and an article on how to make ganache on d blog by him again,I would like to say or ask dunno.
    It really doesn’t matter Wat size of the cake, sir is gonna fill n ganache, the proportions of choc n cream should b 2:1 rite in case of dark choc ( also dats what d chart says)
    Now according to d video on how to ganache the cake with d dark chocolate ( no matter Wat size of Cake it is) proportions of dark choc n cream is not 2:1 since it’s 1600 gms of choc: 1127 gms of cream because half of 1600 would b 800 so it should hv been 1600 gms of choc: 800 gms of cream ( which is correct according to d chart too)
    So M guessing dat we have to adjust d choc or cream consistency as we desire.. We can compromise on Lil choc or cream according to d desired consistency.
    I m kind of person who would take exact exact proportions as asked.so when I saw d differences in d proportions by the same person was kinda curious so as to why such a difference.
    N now another qt since I read in one of the posts in q n a dat 1:1 (dark) gives a firm but soft filling so if I opt dat as filling n 2:1 proportion to ganache d cake den m I dping rite. If I opt dis way den how to go abt it. Shld I make 1:1 proportion.. Fill d cake n weigh d left over n if say my leftover ganache is say 200 gms den assuming dat 100 grams would b choc in it I should add more 100 gms to make it 2:1 consistency.
    Sorry for d long msg.
    Thanks again.

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Decake

      There is no right or wrong way to make ganache.
      Paul’s amounts are guides and so are the amounts in my chart. Most people will use 2:1 ratio for dark as this has been found to set very well for the purposes of cake decorating. The chart is there as a reference point but you can make your own adjustments as you please. It is possible that Paul uses different ratios at different times to compensate for environmental conditions. If the weather is hot and humid it would be necessary to increase the chocolate amount slightly or reduce it if the weather is particularly cold. I do the same all the time.
      For personal preference I make a 1:1 ratio for filling. It makes a soft ganache which doesn’t set hard but I use 2:1 ratio for covering. You can do this if you would like and add more chocolate to any left over to make it stronger for covering. The best way to find what works for you is to experiment with ratios and quantities. Experiment with your own ratios using the above as guides. Let us know how you get on, as one recipe does not necessarily please all of the people.

  28. Reply marsanew

    Hi I made yesterday a cake with ganache and i put it in the fridge. When i took it out i iced it with fondant immediatly and fondant became wet and sticky… What was the problem, did i had to leave it out of the fridge to get room temperature firstly?

    • Reply David Brice

      You are ok putting a cake covered in ganache in the fridge but fondant (sugarpaste) will ‘sweat’ in the fridge causing the moisture making it wet and sticky.
      Best to avoid putting fondant in the fridge at all, but ganache is fine. Kind regards, David

  29. Reply leanne79

    Hi im new to ganache. I’ve got a 10 ” cake to cover. Do I measure the cream in a jug or weigh it? Also what chocolate do people use as it’s just cost me £10 to buy 35% milk chocolate to get amount I need that’s stated in the chart.

    • Reply madeitwithlove

      Hi Leanne79

      Weighing the cream is much more accurate than volume measure and it’s a lot easier.
      Sometimes buying bars of chocolate works out a lot more expensive than sacks. If you google callebaut chocolate or Belcolade you’ll discover a host of suppliers who sell professional quality chocolate at extremely reasonable prices.

  30. Reply Cat

    Thanks so much for the chart……
    and don’t you just love the information available at the click of a mouse…..
    what on earth did we do 30 years ago????
    (I know- we got organised earlier)

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