Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Cake Series: Chocolate Peanut Butter Ganache

I made a dessert for Easter that was topped with ganache made with a combination of chocolate chips and peanut butter chips.  Brilliant!  Why didn't I think of that?!  Ganache, in and of itself, is so delicious, but then add peanut butter and you've got something that is out-of-this-world delicious!  I had recently made cupcakes for my husband to take to work and wanted to top them with whipped ganache.  But then I thought, why settle for that when I can top them with peanut butter ganache?  The cupcakes were chocolate and peanut butter anyway, so it fit perfectly.  The problem was that I didn't have any peanut butter chips and, to be honest, I really don't ever buy them, because they're expensive. So I decided to experiment a little bit and used peanut butter instead of peanut butter chips, and it worked!  Now, I will say that it didn't have a super strong peanut butter flavor, but it was definitely there nonetheless.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Ganache
8 oz. chocolate (I use chocolate chips)
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 to 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

In a medium bowl, add chocolate chips and peanut butter.  

Warm the cream in the microwave to a simmer.   Pour warm cream over chocolate chips and stir until the chocolate chips and peanut butter have melted and the mixture is smooth.  I somehow neglected to realize that my chocolate chips had just come out of the refrigerator and wouldn't melt, so I just threw the mixture into the microwave for a few seconds.  If your chocolate isn't melting all the way, you can do the same.  (Sumiko mentioned that she also microwaves the chocolate chips (and peanut butter) a little bit before adding the cream.)  At this point, you can either pour it over a cake as a glaze, or you can let it cool a while and spread it as frosting.  You can also wait until it's completely cool and then whip it with a mixer.  The ganache can be used as a frosting or a filling.

Unwhipped ganache

Whipped ganache, swirled with peanut butter filling.  Sorry for the poor picture quality.

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