This fluffy White Chocolate Matcha Mousse is paired with a sweet and crunchy Sesame Brittle for a delightfully contrasting dessert experience.
I’m having some issues with this post, mostly because I feel that my photos don’t do much justice for this recipe. I find myself wishing I had taken the time to set the shots up more, moved things around, shifted the direction of the lighting… You know, all those things one thinks of in hindsight when they’re not happy with the finished photograph. Because this recipe was pretty terrific and I can’t help but feel that it deserves better photos. (End of dramatic intro.)
These days I have an automatic reaction every time I come across spoon dessert recipes (ie. mousses, pudding, and panna cotta). I can’t help but think about pairings– as in what would go well with this light panna cotta or this rich mousse? I’d immediately squeeze my brain for things that have textural contrasts and complementary flavors.
Frankly speaking, well-made puddings or mousses or panna cotta are great on their own, but I have found that it’s just a bit nicer to enjoy them with something else you can bite into or chew on. I tried to trace my memory to where this “obsession” with pairings began, and I feel like it was quietly planted in my brain after the amazing meal I had at La Maison de la Nature Goh in Fukuoka. In any case, I love that it’s bringing out my creativity in mixing and matching.
When I decided to make this White Chocolate Matcha Mousse, I knew I wanted to pair it with something sesame– maybe a tuile, or a langue de chat with sesame embedded on it. It wasn’t until my mother shared some peanut brittle with me that I had the thought of making a sesame brittle to pair with the mousse.
A part of me was nervous about how sweet this dessert might end up being, so I really tried my best to make sure neither the mousse nor the brittle would end up overwhelmingly sweet. After doing a lot of research and scrapping a couple of recipes, I settled on two I was ultimately satisfied with. And so here we are.
Of course, I do need to mention that the big players in the success of this recipe are the white chocolate and matcha that I used. I used Auro Chocolate‘s White Chocolate Buttons (surprise, surprise) and got a really creamy, just-sweet, milky mousse with lovely hints of vanilla. I also used a really good culinary matcha powder that I’ve previously tested and loved.
The matcha flavor complemented the white chocolate really well, both having their own moments in the spotlight in this White Chocolate Matcha Mousse. And because the mousse is not too sweet, it paired so well with the brittle. Caramel-honey with an earthy sesame taste, the brittle gives this mousse the oomph you didn’t know it needed! The only thing I regret is not using a combo of white and black sesame, because I just think white sesame tastes a lot better.
I feel like I need to mention that the best part of this White Chocolate Matcha Mousse is how brilliantly fluffy it is. I do think it’s obvious in the photo below, but just in case you were wondering, this was so light and airy in the mouth it makes you close your eyes for the briefest moment as you float to the clouds. And then you follow it up with that crunchy brittle and land right back on earth, satisfied and ready to do it all over again!
Every good recipe starts with good ingredients. In the case of this mousse recipe, since the ingredients are basically white chocolate, matcha, and cream, you need to be picking good brands for each off the bat. Don’t even second guess, because I promise it’ll be worth it. Get yourself some good cream, the kind labeled heavy whipping cream with 36% fat and up. You’ll need 1-1/2 cups cream in total for this recipe. The matcha powder doesn’t need to be super expensive, but at least find a culinary-grade one with a good review. As for the white chocolate, I do recommend Auro‘s 32%.
First you’ll need to make a matcha paste for the matcha-white chocolate base. Whisk some sifted matcha with a few tablespoons of cream until smooth, then add it into a bowl with the white chocolate and about 1/4 cup of the cream. Melt this using the bain marie method: Place the bowl with the chocolate over simmering water but make sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. We just want the heat from the steam to gently melt the chocolate until smooth.
Once the matcha white chocolate mix is smooth, let it cool for 15 minutes before proceeding. (Place the cream in the fridge in the meantime.)
Now we whip the remaining cream until stiff pointy peaks form when you lift your hand mixer. Don’t worry if it looks slightly grainy but don’t overwhip. Give your matcha white choco a mix, then beat in 1/3 of the whipped cream to loosen the mixture up. This step makes it easier to fold the rest of the cream in.
Use a spatula to fold in the rest of the cream, until the mixture is completely combined but not deflated. It should look an even green color and should look aerated.
Divide the mousse mixture among 6 serving glasses and chill in the fridge at least 2 hours. Meanwhile, let’s make the brittle. (You can also do this in advance and just store in an airtight container at room temp.)
To make this, basically you just place all the brittle ingredients except the baking soda into a saucepan and heat it up. I used all black sesame because I didn’t have any white at the time, but I recommend using white sesame more. Ideally you want to use a combo, and make sure to toast them beforehand for extra flavor.
When you take the saucepan to the stove, stir it constantly at first until it comes to a boil. Once bubbling, stop stirring and leave it alone to continue boiling for around 10 minutes, or until it reaches 300°F (150°C) on a candy thermometer. Make sure you prepare your baking sheet at this point, lining it with parchment and brushing a bit of butter/oil on it to make sure no sticking occurs.
Take the saucepan off the heat and mix in the baking soda, until fully combined. If your baking soda is lumpy, sift it in to avoid those big lumps of white in your brittle.
Immediately pour out all the contents of the saucepan onto the prepared baking sheet and spread the brittle out with a flat heatproof object until 1/4 inch thin. I like using my stainless measuring cup for this. Be careful not to touch that hot sugar! Now just leave this mass of candy to cool completely and harden.
And then break it into shards! The size is up to you.
By the time the brittle is ready, the mousse will be ready too. Decorate as you desire.
I don’t have much to say at this point except YOU NEED THIS FLUFFY MOUSSE IN YOUR LIFE! ASAP. And the sesame brittle too, obviously. (You can see how fluffy that spoonful of mousse is right??!)
White Chocolate Matcha Mousse with Sesame Brittle
For the White Chocolate Matcha Mousse
- 1½ teaspoons matcha powder
- 1½ cups 360 mL heavy cream, divided use
- 170 grams good-quality white chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Sesame Brittle
- 6 Tablespoons white sesame seeds, toasted and cooled
- 6 Tablespoons black sesame seeds, toasted and cooled
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup light corn syrup
- 2 Tablespoons water
- ½ Tablespoon butter
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
Make the mousse
- Using a narrow-bottomed small bowl, vigorously whisk together matcha powder and 2 Tablespoons of the heavy cream. Whisk until you get a thick paste.
- In a large bowl, place the chocolate and add in 1/4 cup of the cream. Add in the matcha paste. Place bowl on top of a saucepan over some simmering water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water.
- Melt the chocolate using this double boiler method, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and let cool about 15 minutes before proceeding. Stir the matcha chocolate occasionally to keep it from setting. (Return rest of cream to the fridge in the meantime.)
- In a medium bowl, whisk the remaining cream with vanilla until stiff peaks form. Combine about 1/3 of the stiff cream into the matcha white chocolate, mixing until combined and loosened. Using a spatula, fold in the remaining stiff cream until mixture is homogenous. Be careful not to overmix or the mixture will deflate.
- Divide the mousse among 6 serving glasses. Cover and let set in fridge at least 2 hours.
Meanwhile, make the brittle
- In a medium saucepan, mix together sesame seeds, sugar, corn syrup, water, and butter. Stirring constantly over medium heat, bring mixture to a boil.
- Once boiling, stop stirring and let it continue cooking for about 10 minutes. Maintain the heat so the brittle reaches the required temperature gradually rather than suddenly. Boil until it reaches 300°F (150°C) on a quick-read candy thermometer.
- Meanwhile, line a pan with parchment or silpat then grease with butter or cooking spray.
- Once temperature is reached, remove the pan from the stove and stir in the baking soda until combined. Pour the hot mixture onto the buttered pan and immediately spread it to a ¼ inch thick mass. Use a flat metal spatula or flat-bottomed heatproof object to make this process faster and easier, and be careful not to touch the cooked sugar mixture as it will burn! Leave to cool and harden at room temperature.
- Once hardened, break the sesame brittle into pieces. (If not using immediately, or in case of leftovers, store in a covered airtight container for 3 days.) Once the mousse is ready to serve, place brittle decoratively on top of the mousse. Enjoy!
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