Total time: 20 minutes
Servings: About 6 cups, enough for 2 to 4 dozen cupcakes
1 1/2 pounds bittersweet chocolate
4 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1. In the bowl of a food processor, finely chop the chocolate (it should be almost powdery). Alternatively, melt the chocolate in a medium bowl set over a pot of simmering water.
2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer. Immediately remove from heat and combine with the chocolate: If using a food processor, pour the cream into the processor bowl while pulsing (the cream will melt the chocolate); alternatively, stir the cream together with the melted chocolate until the chocolate has melted. Add the vanilla.
3. Place the melted chocolate-cream mixture in a metal bowl set into an ice bath. Use a whisk to whip the mixture just until it thickens sufficiently to use as a frosting. Remove from the ice bath. Use immediately or store, covered, at room temperature for up to overnight.
Each 2 tablespoons: 140 calories; 1 gram protein; 8 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 13 grams fat; 8 grams saturated fat; 27 mg. cholesterol; 8 mg. sodium.
Recipe: Chocolate ganache frosting
Cupcakes (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)