One of the perks of living alone is the freedom to interpret the phrase “proper meal” however the heck you want. Even if your cohabiter’s diet preferences are in line with yours, their presence can repress your more feral tendencies, like making a bowl of ganache in the microwave and eating it with a spoon (just as an example).
I call this dish “I Live Alone” ganache, and it’s a very freeing dessert. It’s easy to make and, due to an aggressive lack of measuring, it never comes out exactly the same—which is fun. All you have to do is put some semi-sweet chocolate chips in a bowl, barely cover them with heavy whipping cream, and nuke them in short little microwave blasts until the chocolate has melted fully. You can dip things (like fruit) in it or pour it on stuff (like ice cream or cake), or you can let it sit and cool until it is solid enough to scoop directly into your mouth. I keep my cooled ganache in the microwave, and take a spoonful whenever the craving strikes.
Of course you do not have to live alone to enjoy this chocolate treat, you just have to establish boundaries around your bowl of ganache, or commit to sharing. Luckily, it is very easy to make, so you can always whip up a second bowl if other members of your household decide that they want in on this action.
Since there are only two ingredients, the ratio of those two ingredients is the only thing you have to worry about “controlling.” I always eyeball it. You don’t want to fully submerge chocolate chips in cream—you want to be able to see quite a few peeking out in the sea of white. The ratio you see in the above photo is perfect if you want a soft ganache that stays dippable at room temperature and pressure, but I ended up adding another small handful to firm it up. Luckily, you can’t really mess this stuff up—it’s chocolate and cream, melted together. You’ve got this!
How to Make “I Live Alone” Ganache
- semisweet chocolate chips
- heavy whipping cream
Pour a healthy amount of chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl. What is a “healthy amount”? It’s whatever you need in that moment, my friend. Pour heavy cream over the chips, like it’s vitamin D milk and chips are cereal. Add just enough to barely cover the chocolate—the more cream you add, the softer your ganache will be. Place the bowl in the microwave and nuke on full power for 30 seconds. Remove the bowl, stir the chocolate (it will get kind of lumpy and stiff), and return the bowl to the microwave. Nuke it for 15 seconds, then stir once more. Repeat one or two more times, decreasing the number of seconds as you approach the “fully melted” stage. If your ganache looks like milk chocolate, it will be quite loose, so add another small handful of chocolate chips to give it a bit more body until it darkens in color. (You want it to look like the ganache in the top photo.)
Now you’re ready to dip things into it, or pour it on stuff. You can also just let it sit still for a while and firm up, which is what I like to do. If you want to get fancy, you can sprinkle a little salt on top of your chocolate creation. If you want to get elaborate, you can let it firm up fully for several hours, then roll it into little orbs and dust them with cocoa powder to make truffles. It’s your ganache to do with what you please, but I strongly recommend keeping with the feral spirit of the dish and storing it in the microwave so you can take spoonfuls each time the mood strikes. That is how it’s meant to be enjoyed.