What It Really Means To Mature Ganache

It's no secret that when it comes to cooking, allowing combined ingredients to marinate gives everything time to merge together, manipulating separate forces into one unit. This is particularly true for cuts of meat like steak, chicken, and pork, but did you know that marinating is a method that can be useful in baking as well? When it comes to indulgent treats like chocolate ganache, it's actually best to allow the mixture to sit at room temperature (covered) for at least seven hours before proceeding with whatever recipe you're making it for. This is a technique called maturing the ganache, and it's a process that encourages the mixture's flavors to marry and come forward, while also bringing out the best consistency and smoothness.

To mature ganache, make sure you don't refrigerate it but try to keep it in the coolest room in the house, similar to the way you would age an alcohol-based fruitcake. After the ganache has matured — preferably overnight — you can then move on to refrigeration if making truffles or storing it for future use, or you can go ahead and incorporate it at room temperature into pastries, cakes, etc.

How to get the right consistency after maturing ganache

The longer a ganache sits at room temperature, the more firm it will become. If you're preparing a thin ganache for glazing and pouring, you may be worried about the consistency after letting it rest for so long. The good news is that you can easily reheat ganache using a double boiler. We recommend this method because other mediums like microwaves run the risk of burning the ganache, and unfortunately, there's not much you can do to fix a burnt flavor in the mixture.

On the other hand, some recipes already call for letting the ganache rest on the counter overnight or for up to 12 hours because it creates the perfect thickness for truffles and spreading, so the maturing will happen in this process. As long as your ganache contains a high-fat content and your house doesn't exceed 77 degrees Fahrenheit, leaving it out for up to two days should be no problem safety-wise; however, because ganache does contain dairy, try not to leave it out for more than two days. After the two days are up, you can store it in a refrigerator for as long as a month.