1) Prepare the sponge cake. Crack the egg yolks in a bowl, whisk gently, and add half the listed amount of granulated sugar until thick.
Add milk and vegetable oil in that order. Mix after each addition, well each time you introduce a new ingredient. Sift in cake flour, and mix until well-incorporated.
Place the egg whites in a separate bowl, add the rest of the granulated sugar, and whisk until a firm yet glossy meringue forms.
Add in one scoop of the meringue from Step 3 into the bowl from Step 2, and combine together with circular motions. Mix in the remaining portion of the meringue in two batches with a rubber spatula.
Pour the batter into a 20 x 25 cm pan and flatten the surface. Bake for 10 minutes in a oven heated to 180℃. Once baked, cool the cake in the pan.
Cut out the sponge cake with a 6 cm diameter cookie cutter. Wrap a clear acetate cake wrap around it.
2) Prepare the matcha mousse. Whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form (you can just whip up 130 ml of the heavy cream to use for the sakura mousse as well).
Pour the milk into a pot and heat over medium until warm to the touch. Mix in the matcha dissolved in warm water.
Bloom the gelatin by shaking in the powder into 1 tablespoon of water. Warm up the mixture for 10 seconds or so in the microwave. Pour into Step 8, mix, then turn off the heat.
Place the bowl with the egg yolks over a bain-marie, add in granulated sugar, and whip until it forms a thick ribbon when the whisk is lifted. Then, mix in the milk mixture from Step 9.
Once it has cooled down, add half the whipped cream from Step 7, mix, and pour into the cylindrical cake wraps with the sponge cake circles. Chill in refrigerator to set.
3) Prepare the sakura mousse. Combine the sakura an paste and milk in a pot, mix well, and warm.
Add the gelatin powder into 1 tablespoon of water to bloom. Warm in the microwave for approximately 10 seconds, add to Step 12, and mix.
Once cooled, mix in the remaining whipped cream from Step 7 and pour into the cake wrap cylinders. Chill to set.
Once the mousse starts to firm up, decorate the tops with de-salted salt preserved sakura blossoms. You're all done when the mousse has set completely.
Story Behind this Recipe
I wanted to try preparing a spring-inspired mousse using sakura an paste.
This dessert is just as delicious without the sponge cake layer.