Originally Posted by experimenting
Thank you for your responses and advice!
I followed Inspired By Michelle directions for making ganache when I tried it. I wisked after the chocolate was all melted and refrigerated overnight. The next day, I just let it sit out to bring it back to room temperature. The consistency was like a very stiff buttercream. It worked great for covering the cake, but I think it was only for covering the cake because it hardened quickly. What I mean by that it was sort of like a truffle. It wasn't hard as a rock, but hard like the outside of a chocolate candy, if that makes sense. Then again, maybe I did something wrong! I will whip it next time after refrigeration and try piping after that.
Thank you again
You made it way different than I do. I heat the cream (12 oz heavy cream) until it just starts to get bubbles around the edge and feels hot to the touch. You can also put a spoon in it and take it out and run your finger along the back -- if it maintains a separation with your finger track in the center it's ready. (I hope that made sense!) At this point stir in any flavorings you want.
In a large, plastic bowl, have 24 oz of chocolate chopped into small chips. I've used brand name semi-sweet chocolate chips with no problem. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and give the bowl a gentle shake to cover the chocolate. Count to 10, then take a whisk and stir until it's shiny and smooth (this will take about 2 minutes.) You can also work with a hand mixer but I've found that's not necessary. If you get lumps, that means your cream wasn't warm enough.
At this point cover with plastic wrap, leaving the plastic wrap right on the surface of the ganache. Let set on the counter overnight (preferably in a cool room) -- do not refrigerate. The next morning it will be a good consistency to scoop out and make truffles, or put a hand mixer in and whip up for piping. If you want to pour it over a cake, make sure the cake is chilled (not frozen solid) and heat up the ganache lightly (don't put it in the microwave on high for 10 minutes, it's chocolate -- it doesn't take much to melt it.) Then pour over your cake.
I've been doing it this way for years with no problems. Hope that helps!