Everything You Need To Know About Ganache

Ganache may sound like the fanciest thing ever, but it's actually just two ingredients. What's that, you say? Yes, that mysterious word you see on dessert menus and recipes for cakes to truffles only sounds sophisticated because it's French (via Kitchn). Ganache is a chocolatey, creamy mixture that's almost a cross between a frosting and a chocolate glaze. Luckily, according to Kitchn, you can make it at home with a few basic ingredients, and it's great in everything from a chocolate layer cake to a ganache tar to sweet dessert bars.

According to Merriam Webster's history of the word and Haggard Hawks, the ganache was originally a kind of Parisian bonbon from a confectioner called Paul Siraudin, which he likely named after the play of the same name called "Les Ganaches" by Siraudin, a playwright himself, had a penchant for naming candies for successful theatrical pieces (via Haggard Hawks, Paris and Her People Under the Third Republic). Ganache literally means "lower jaw of a horse, jowl, imbecile" and in the play, referred to "those who hold old fashioned and non-progressive views" (via Merriam Webster and Haggard Hawks).

What is ganache and how do you use it?

Ganache, if such a thing is possible, makes chocolate even more delicious than eating it alone. It's traditionally a mixture of hot cream and dark chocolate, made by simmering cream, pouring it over and then whisking it into chopped chocolate. The resulting smooth mixture can be softened with more cream and used in chocolate molds or frosting, or use a higher proportion of chocolate to yield a harder mix when cooled for truffles (via The Spruce Eats). You can liven up ganache even further by adding flavored extracts, or add in butter for even more richness.

Chocolate ganache is usually firmer than a whipped frosting, with a deeper, richer flavor and a luscious texture, although you can also make whipped ganache with the same texture as buttercream (via Baking a Moment). Try your hand at a simple ganache to make truffles dusted with cocoa powder, as suggested by Serious Eats, glaze a basic chocolate cake with it to bring it to the next level, use it to fill macarons like Delicious Every Day does, try a white chocolate ganache courtesy of Sugar Geek Show, or just scoop it onto ice cream, as exemplified by The New York Times).