the appetizer:

Learn to make extraordinary cakes with Cake Art from the Culinary Institute of America by Chefs Kate Cavotti & Alison McLoughlin, featuring recipes for Glazed Cake with Chocolate Tiles, Chocolate Flower Cupcakes, Chocolate Sponge Cake, and Hard Ganache.

I Love Desserts

Hard Ganache

Makes 5 pounds or about 8 cups


1. Place the chocolate in a stainless steel bowl. Bring the heavy cream just to a simmer. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, and allow to stand for 1 minute, stirring until the chocolate is thoroughly melted.

2. The ganache can be used immediately, or it can be covered and stored under refrigeration, then warmed prior to use.


Glazing a Cake with Hard Ganache

Glazing a Cake with Ganache

Keep in mind a cake's height when you are ready to glaze. A shorter cake will need less ganache to cover the top and sides than a taller cake. The ganache should feel slightly warm to the touch, between 100 degrees F and 110 degrees F, for glazing. This temperature ensures that the ganache will be fluid enough to flow over the cake, but it will not lose its shine or melt the buttercream coating underneath.

1. Place the cake on a cardboard circle that is the exact size of the cake. If necessary, trim the cake circle to fit the cake.

2. Place an inverted cake pan, or similar object that is slightly smaller than the cake itself, on a baking sheet. Position the cake on top of the inverted pan.

3. Prepare a hard ganache (see above). Once all the chocolate has melted into the cream, allow the ganache to cool to between 100 degrees F and 110 degrees F.

4. Using a ladle or a 1-cup measure, pour 2 cups of chocolate ganache onto the center of the cake; 2 cups is enough to cover a short 6-inch cake. When covering larger cakes, it is better to use more ganache than you think you will need because excess ganache will drip onto the baking sheet and can be reused.

5. Using a large offset palette knife, push the ganache from the center of the cake over the sides. Make sure the top of the cake has a thin and even coating.

6. If the ganache does not cover all of the sides of the cake, use a small knife or offset palette knife to spread some ganache onto those areas.

7. Allow the ganache to drip off the cake onto the baking sheet. Once the ganache has set, hold the cake from the bottom (remember, there is a cake board that you can hold onto) and trim any excess ganache with a small offset palette knife.


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This page created May 2008