How To Smoke Chocolate Ganache For A Deeper Flavor

Chocolate ganache is somewhat of a Trojan horse in the food world. Upon hearing the French word "ganache," this fancy and richly decadent mixture of chocolate and cream sounds like something capable of being mastered only by top bakers and chefs. However, you'll be glad to hear chocolate ganache is deceptively simple and can elevate any dessert to the next level. Traditionally, ganache only requires two ingredients: chocolate and heavy cream. Once this mixture is combined and set, it can be used to make truffles, glazes, and frosting, filling for baked goods, or even mousse.

To take chocolate ganache to the next level, working in a bit of smokiness may intensify the flavor even more by adding a deep boldness to its profile. Essentially, all you need to smoke chocolate ganache is a grill and a smoking tube or maze, along with your ingredients. You'll want to cold-smoke the chocolate before preparing the ganache, so keep in mind that this process is all about infusing the chocolate with smoke before melting it.

Cold smoking is done by filling a smoking tube with pellets or sawdust, and then lighting the pellets and blowing out the flame, thus creating smoke. The tube is placed right on top of the grill grate, where smoke can escape through the holes of the tube. Then, you'd add whatever food you're smoking — in this case chocolate — onto the second grate. Smoke can now envelop the chocolate for several hours inside the grill.

Turning smoked chocolate into a muscovado ganache

Our muscovado chocolate ganache recipe is the perfect ganache to smoke because it incorporates dark chocolate and muscovado sugar, which is a combination with a wonderfully bold, toffee-like richness. The only difference here is that you would smoke the 8 ½ ounces of 70% dark chocolate before doing anything else. You'll want to use high-quality chocolate for the best flavor and melting point. Begin by filling a smoking tube with pellets of your choosing. Then, ignite the pellets with a torch until a flame is achieved. Then, blow out the flame. Place the tube directly on the grill grate. Set a non-stick grill mat onto the second grate and evenly spread out pieces of the dark chocolate. With the lid open, allow the smoke to infuse into the chocolate for two to three hours.

After the chocolate has sat in the smoke for several hours, you can begin making the ganache and following the recipe as is. Since this is a versatile ganache, you can certainly branch out with it — try chilling and rolling it out into truffles, use it for a unique and smoky twist on chocolate lava cake, or even use it as an ice cream sauce for an irresistible balance to the creamy dairy.