break [breyk] verb
1. A term that describes various textural faults that can happen to any number of foodstuffs, such as ganache or buttercream. When a ganache “breaks,” it is because the emulsion of chocolate and cream (and maybe butter) has failed to combine. This can happen when the amount of fat from the cream and/or butter and the amount of fat from the chocolate’s cocoa butter is just too much for the mixture to hold together in a smooth, creamy way. 2. The action of breaking something, such as breaking apart hunks of almond bark to create a natural shape (as opposed to cutting with a knife).
Two techniques may help you fix a broken ganache: You can try drizzling in cold cream while whisking somewhat vigorously – this will change your amounts of ingredients and yield of ganache, of course; or you can buzz it with an immersion blender until smooth. The best way to prevent this from happening is to pay close attention to the cacao percentage in the chocolate used for the recipe. If no percentage is listed, try 55% or lower. The higher percentages can wreak havoc with certain ganache recipes, unless it has been developed specifically for that percentage.