Smbc/ganache Mystery: Help Please :)

Decorating By lrlt2000 Updated 17 Aug 2011 , 10:25pm by southerncross

lrlt2000 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 2:35pm
post #1 of 17

I have been using SMBC and white chocolate ganache under fondant lately for my cakes, and I've not had as much luck as most people are posting here.

I'm very happy with my SMBC--no trouble making it, tastes heavenly, supports layers well when first stacked, etc. I often use seedless raspberry jam to flavor, after the SMBC is completed (and I've been told here I don't need to add any more dry ingredient, i.e., powdered sugar, to balance). I generally torte/fill, cover and chill while between it and other work. I take it out to ganache and put back in until I cover with fondant.

I also have no problems making ganache: I use the 4:1 ratio, let it sit room temp at least over night, or if I have to make ahead and chill in fridge, I microwave in short bursts of 10 seconds until I can stir/spread it. I usually cover a chilled tier, so the ganache sets up beautifully as I spread it over the cake.

What's happening is, when I'm done with covering with fondant (usually the day before I deliver), I leave the cake at room temp while and after I decorate--I've read this is fine, food safety wise. It then starts to get really unstable--as if the SMBC is getting too soft. I also notice as it comes to room temp, the ganache gets really soft (and I even use a 4:1 ratio).

I also get the infamous bulges (not terrible, but still there), even though it's been at least two days of settling. I also cake squash when the cakes are done baking icon_wink.gif When I did my youngest daughter's topsy turvy this past weekend, I had major issues with this. I also noticed, when eating it, that the SMBC was way too soft and seemed to have softened and soaked into the cake a little. The cake was almost impossible to get a clean slice out without it falling apart. It seemed as though it needed to be a chilled cake (which I am afraid to do with tons of fondant, and also for space reasons storing a super high cake in my small home fridge!)

I don't use a dam, but I've been told here that I don't need one when using SMBC and ganache outer. I only use one thick layer or two thinner layers of ganache, but I don't want too much of this to alter the taste of the cake.

Should I really be refrigerating SMBC!? What's the deal!? If a dam would help, what should I use for the dam?

16 replies
TexasSugar Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 3:21pm
post #2 of 17

I haven't worked with SMBC, but I think everyone is just having issues right now with the heat.

I know when I get home after work at 5:30 my house is 78 degrees even though the AC is on and has probably been running all afternoon. That means a warmer house and means that some things icing related may not hold up as well. Butter has a low melting point, and will get soft pretty fast. Think about sitting a stick of butter on the kitchen cabinet. Even chocolate, sitting at a really warm temp can soften up some.

Where you having these same issues in the spring or winter? Or have they just really been happening this summer? It may be that you have to find some adjustments during the summer months to help with the heat.

southerncross Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 3:39pm
post #3 of 17

For what it's worth, I don't use SMBC to crumb coat or otherwise put it under the ganache coating. I just use ganache in place of SMBC before putting the fondant on the cake

KoryAK Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 5:32pm
post #4 of 17

It sounds like a problem with the ganache. White chocolate ganache is infamously soft. For me, I have trouble getting it firm enough (ratio wise) to be FIRM without hitting the breaking point.

SMBC can be very soft during transport at room temp. I only move mine cold.

mariacakestoo Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 5:41pm
post #5 of 17

SMBC is best treated as a keep cold at all times product, only coming to room temp ONCE, and that is as it is sitting in it's final place before the customer cuts into it. That's it.

lrlt2000 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 6:51pm
post #6 of 17

southerncross: yes, I do that too. I only use SMBC as the filling (vanilla or otherwise flavored), not outside the cake. Do you use a dam??

Claire138 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:10pm
post #7 of 17

I don't use SMBC in the summer months at all, I only use ganache. SMBC is just too soft even after having been in the fridge.

lrlt2000 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:30pm
post #8 of 17

Claire138: you use ganache as your filling, too? If not, what do you use?

Claire138 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:33pm
post #9 of 17

Yes, I use it as filling. Delicious!

lrlt2000 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:51pm
post #10 of 17

Is it a whipped ganache?? I am interested! I took to SMBC because it was so nice and creamy and not so sweet, like traditional BCs. I have to imagine ganache as a filling is REALLY sweet/rich!!?

Claire138 Posted 16 Aug 2011 , 7:58pm
post #11 of 17

The ganache is rich but I love it & it goes with everything! I don't whip it too thick but just enough to get a spreadable consistency. I use 250 g of dark chocolate, 1 cup whip cream and some brandy. It also keeps the cakes very moist. Win Win!

southerncross Posted 17 Aug 2011 , 1:43am
post #12 of 17

I don't whip my ganache. i follow Michelle's tutorial. I use mouselline (basically a SMBC) as a filling and chill the filled cake before spreading the ganache. I haven't had any problem without the dam. Once the ganache is on the cake and chilled, it firms up and I haven't had any bulging problems. At first I worried that the ganache undercoat would be too rich but not at all. Whether I used white chocolate or dark, I've been getting rave reviews. I started using ganache this summer just to avoid problems with SMBC but now I think I'll be using it under all my fondant cakes.

lrlt2000 Posted 17 Aug 2011 , 6:46pm
post #13 of 17

Thanks! What is your ratio for white chocolate?? I've been using 4:1, which I thought was more than called for, but I'm still feeling like it's too soft at room temp. Maybe I should increase it even more? 4.5:1!?

southerncross Posted 17 Aug 2011 , 8:20pm
post #14 of 17

I use Michelle's ganache calculator...she's the most knowledgable Aussie baker I've ever seen. Just download and plug in your cake size. it give you the cream to chocolate ratio for both white and dark chocolate.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/28726919/Ganache%20calculator.xlsx

I usually put my ganache in the refrigerator overnight then bring it to room temp before putting it on the cake and the white chocolate is the perfect texture. good luck

lrlt2000 Posted 17 Aug 2011 , 9:08pm
post #15 of 17

Wow, that looks helpful! Is that calculated based on just covering the outside of the cake? Or does it include amounts needed to fill??

LisaPeps Posted 17 Aug 2011 , 9:39pm
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by southerncross

I use Michelle's ganache calculator...she's the most knowledgable Aussie baker I've ever seen. Just download and plug in your cake size. it give you the cream to chocolate ratio for both white and dark chocolate.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/28726919/Ganache%20calculator.xlsx

I usually put my ganache in the refrigerator overnight then bring it to room temp before putting it on the cake and the white chocolate is the perfect texture. good luck




Thank the Lord you saw this thread and posted this!!

southerncross Posted 17 Aug 2011 , 10:25pm
post #17 of 17

I never use ganache as the filling so I just use the calculation for each tier according to how tall it is and the diameter. I suppose if you wanted to fill with ganache you could calculate each torted layer

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