A fantasy of chocolate truffles: balls of ganache covered in cocoa powder. Photo courtesy of




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December 2007

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Dessert Sauces & Toppings

Chocolate Ganache Recipe

Make A Dessert Sauce ... Or Chocolate Truffles



As a holiday gift, Chocolat Céleste’s Mary Leonard, creator of the wonderful balls of chocolate and cream known as truffles, is sharing her ganache recipe.

The definition of ganache is both simple—a mixture of chocolate and cream—and lengthy. The velvety smooth blend of chocolate and cream often has butter added. Ganache can be rolled in cocoa powder, confectioner’s sugar, nuts or other coatings to make a truffle; or it can be enrobed in a hard chocolate coating. It can be made from dark, milk or white chocolate and flavored with coffee, liqueurs, extracts—virtually any flavor that inspires the chocolatier. Using more chocolate than cream yields a firmer ganache, whereas more cream than chocolate yields a softer, more velvety mixture. Ganache beaten with butter can be used as a filling and frosting for cakes and pastries (ganache beurre or ganache soufflé), and in its heated, liquid state can be poured over cakes and pastries as a glaze. What matters most is the quality of the chocolate: Average chocolate makes average ganache, great chocolate makes all the difference.

Read our review of Chocolat Céleste truffles.


  • 1 cup whipping cream (not ultra-pasteurized)
  • 11 ounces bittersweet chocolate pieces*
  • 2 tablespoons butter (use a low-moisture brand, with a higher fat content)
  • 3 tablespoons liqueur of your choice (Amaretto, Grand Marnier, etc.) or spices to taste (pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, nutmeg, cayenne pepper)

*Chocolat Celeste uses Schokinag. You can use any fine brand, and can experiment with different cacao percentages on the bittersweet scale. We recommend starting with 70%, or something close to it. You can also make the milk chocolate ganache or white chocolate ganache by substituting milk or white chocolate. Seek chocolate with 33% cacao or higher—40% is terrific for milk chocolate ganache.


  1. In a small saucepan, scald the whipping cream.
  2. In a small bowl, carefully pour the hot cream over the chocolate pieces.   
  3. Stir in the butter. Stir in liqueur (or spices).
  4. Store in refrigerator, sealed in a plastic container, until ready to use.

Serving Suggestions

  • Dessert Sauce: Warm to 90°F (it should be melted and smooth) and use as a sauce over pumpkin bread, banana bread, pound cake or ice cream. 
  • Truffles: Roll ganache into balls and dust with cocoa powder, confectioner’s sugar, finely-chopped nuts, paprika, sweet curry, coconut or other favorites for truffles.

Recipe courtesy of Chocolat Céleste. Other material

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