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Author Notes: This mousse cake will make you fall in love with black sesame. Inspired by the Green Tea and White Chocolate Mousse Cake by てんじゅ (found on washoku.guide), which I made for a friend's work party and received very good feedbacks, I'm making a black sesame version of it. Green tea was delish! But my family and I actually prefer the black sesame version. It may not have that freshly green color, but it has such a nutty and delicate flavor. The sponge cake layer is perfectly fluffy and the mousse is as light as air. This is the dessert you’ll want to enjoy with people you love and trust, those who will still love you dearly even when you have black sesame bits stuck in your teeth.
I made my own sesame powder by toasting 80 grams of black sesame seeds in a pan over medium heat for 5 minutes then grinding them in a food processor. Toasting the seeds really helped to bring out their nutty flavors. But if you have sesame powder on hand, you've got one major step done and the rest is pretty simple.
The reason I'm using 2 different sizes of cake pans is because trimming the sponge cake will ensure a nice and soft exterior. For the mousse cake, I'm using a 15 cm (6-inch) round loose-bottom cake pan. A springform pan or a mousse ring would work perfectly! —amy nguyen
Makes one 6-inch mousse cake
For the sponge cake
- 35 grams all-purpose flour
- 15 grams corn starch
- 10 grams black sesame powder
- 2 large eggs
- 30 grams granulated sugar
- 30 grams whole milk
- 20 grams butter
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 pinch salt
- Preheat the oven to 170°C (340°F). Line a 20-cm (8-inch) round cake pan with parchment paper.
- Sift the dry ingredients: flour, corn starch, and black sesame powder 2-3 times.
- Microwave butter and milk in a microwave-safe bowl for 20 seconds or until butter completely melts.
- Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl placed over a pot of simmering water, make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Gradually add in sugar and beat the eggs with a hand mixer on high speed. Stop beating once the mixture becomes foamy and warm to touch. Take the bowl off the pot and place it on a tea towel on the countertop.
- With your mixer on high, continue to beat the egg. When it starts to thicken, turn speed to low and add salt and vanilla extract. Stop beating once the mixture thickens and forms ribbons.
- In 3 batches, gently fold the sifted dry ingredients into the egg mixture.
- Gradually drizzle the butter and milk mixture into the batter in a few batches. Quickly but gently fold it in with a spatula. Make sure you incorporate the milk and butter well with the batter for each batch before pouring in the next.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Drop the pan a few times on the countertop to knock out any large air bubbles.
- Bake at 170°C (340°F) for 15-20 minutes. The cake is ready when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Remove the cake from the oven once it is done, and drop the pan from a height of 20 cm to prevent it from shrinking. When it is cool enough to handle, carefully turn the cake out (top down) onto a piece of plastic wrap. Remove the parchment paper. Wrap the cake in plastic wrap and let it cool at room temperature.
- When the cake has cooled completely, place a 6-inch round pan in the middle of the cake. Using a serrated knife, trace the bottom of the pan to cut out a circle. You should have a 15 cm x 1.60 cm (6" x 0.6") sponge cake layer. Place the sponge layer in the bottom of the 6-inch cake pan, flat side up. Gently press it down, so that you'll have a smooth surface for the mousse layers.
For the mousse layers
- 125 grams heavy cream
- 30 grams black sesame powder
- 1 large egg
- 20 grams granulated sugar
- 40 grams whole milk (for the sesame mousse)
- 25 grams whole milk (for the white chocolate mousse)
- 50 grams good quality white chocolate, chopped into small pieces
- 4 grams gelatin powder
- 1 tablespoon water (to soak gelatin)
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Whip the heavy cream in a mixing bowl until soft peaks form, mix in vanilla extract. Take out 75 grams of the cream and reserve it in a separate bowl for the white chocolate mousse. Now you have one bowl of 75 grams whipped cream and one bowl of 50 grams whipped cream. Chill both bowls in the fridge until ready to use. Label them if you want.
- Soak gelatin in 1 tablespoon of water. Separate the egg and reserve the white in a clean separate bowl for the chocolate mousse. We will be working with the yolk first.
- For the black sesame mousse: Whisk egg yolk with sugar until thick and pale.
- Mix sesame powder with 1 tablespoon of hot water. In a small saucepan, stir together the sesame mixture and 40 grams milk over low heat. When the mixture starts to bubble, remove from heat, stir in HALF of the soaked gelatin to dissolve.
- Slowly drizzle the hot sesame milk mixture into the egg in a thin stream while whisking continuously.
- Take out the 50 grams of whipped cream you have chilled in the fridge. Fold the sesame-egg mixture into the chilled whipped cream to combine. Pour this on top of the sponge cake layer and let chill in the fridge.
- For the white chocolate mousse: Heat the rest of the milk over low heat, once it starts to boil, turn off the heat and stir in the white chocolate chunks. Keep stirring until chocolate melts completely. Add the rest of soaked gelatin, stir to dissolve. If the gelatin does not dissolve, warm the mixture up a little bit. Be careful not burn the chocolate.
- Whip egg white until stiff peaks form.
- Take out the 75 grams of whipped cream you have chilled in the fridge. Fold the white chocolate mixture into the cream to combine. In 3 batches, fold the egg white into the chocolate-cream mixture, try not to break the foamy texture of the egg white.
- Take the chilled mousse out from the fridge and pour the white chocolate mouse directly on top. Return the mousse cake to the fridge again, let it chill for at least 2 hours.
- When the mousse cake has set, dust a little bit of black sesame powder on top if you want. Wrap a warm wet towel around the pan sides and hold for 20 seconds. Carefully remove the cake; smooth the mousse with a spatula if necessary. Cut and serve!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Sesame