Increasingly fashionable in cooking, matcha is made from ground green tea leaves and is a popular ingredient in Asian desserts. Used in this recipe, it adds incredible flavour to this cake with it’s white chocolate glaze.
For the sponge:
- 6 eggs, separated
- 200g caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 100g plain flour
- 25g ground almonds
- 50g butter, melted
For the matcha mousse:
- 5 gelatine sheets
- 600ml double cream
- 2 tbsp matcha powder
- 250g icing sugar
For the glaze:
- 150ml double cream
- 150g white chocolate
- 1 tsp matcha powder
- Begin by heating your oven to 180°C / 160°C / Gas Mark 4, and grease two 20cm cake tins with some vegetable oil, then line with baking parchment.
- Pop the egg yolks, caster sugar and vanilla into a bowl, and the egg whites into another bowl. In a third bowl, combine the almonds, flour and a pinch of salt.
- Beat the egg whites until they have double in size and are holding stiff peaks, then whisk the eggs yolks until thick and pale. Transfer a spoonful of egg whites into the yolks and mix to loosen, before gently folding in the remaining egg whites.
- Sprinkle the flour mixture into the bowl, and then drizzle the melted (and cooled) butter around the inside edge of the bowl. Fold everything together until just combined, then divide the mixture between the cake tins and bake in the centre of the oven for around 25 minutes until a clean skewer comes out. Cool in their tins for 30 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- In the meantime, bring a kettle of water to the boil and place the gelatine sheets in a bowl of cold water to soften. Pour 150ml of double cream into a saucepan and combine with 50ml of hot water. Add the matcha powder and whisk over a gentle heat until well combined. Remove from the heat and squeeze in the water from the gelatine leaves then add them, one by one, to the hot matcha cream, whisking until they have dissolved.
- Pour the warm cream into a bowl and place in the fridge to cool – you want it to cool to room temperate, so don’t leave it in their for too long.
- Now, line one of your cake tins with a double layer of cling film, ensuring the edges are well covered, then place one of the sponges flat-side-down in the tin.
- Pour the remaining 450ml of cream into a bowl and whisk together with the icing sugar until it is holding soft peaks, then fold through the cooled matcha mixture. Top the sponge with this, then place the remaining sponge on top, flat side up. Wrap with clingfilm and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
- To make the glaze, melt the white chocolate, cream and matcha powder together in a saucepan over a low heat until everything is well combined. Set to one side to cool and thicken for about 10 minutes, then remove the cake from the fridge and unwrap. Release the cake from the tin and remove all clingfilm, then scrape around the edge with a palette knife to remove any excess cream.
- Using baking parchment, create a tight collar around the cake, about 2cm higher than the top, then pour the cooled chocolate glaze over the top. Return to the fridge and chill for another 30 minutes.
- Carefully remove the baking parchment and decorate the exposed surface and top with a mixture of icing sugar and matcha powder.
Lead image: tenkende via Getty images.