black sesame chiffon cake recipe -- eclipse thoughts
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Using ground black sesame seeds versus the black sesame paste will give you slightly different taste. See the notes below the recipe to decide what you like.
  • FOR THE CAKE: 220 g (2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 350 g (1¾ cups) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • 80 g (4 tablespoons) black sesame paste (See important notes before if using ground sesame seeds instead!)*
  • 120 ml (1/2 cup) water
  • 120 ml (1/2 cup) oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • FOR THE FROSTING: 400 to 500ml (about 1 pint) heavy whipping cream**
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons black sesame paste (or ground seeds)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • a few sprinkles of black sesame seeds, for garnish
  1. MAKE THE CAKE: Line a tube pan with parchment on the bottom. Do not grease.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. In a very clean, grease-free bowl, mix egg whites with 1 tablespoon of the sugar and cream of tartar to stiff peaks. Set aside.
  4. In a separate large bowl, whisk together flour, remaining sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  5. In yet another bowl, mix together black sesame paste, water, egg yolks, oil, and vanilla until well combined.
  6. Pour the black sesame mixture into the dry ingredient bowl and mix well.
  7. Scoop about ⅓ of the stiff egg whites into the black sesame/flour mixture and fold to lighten.
  8. Add the rest of the whites in two more batches, folding gently to just combine.
  9. Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake 40-45 minutes until cake tester comes out clean.
  10. When done baking, immediately invert pan (a wine bottle works well) to cool. When cool, use a knife rimmed around the edges to loosen and flip into a cake rack or pedestal. Peel off parchment.
  11. If there are any tears or cracks, don't worry! The frosting will cover it up.
  12. Make sure the cake is completely cool before frosting.
  13. MAKE THE FROSTING: Whip the heavy whipping cream until thickened, then add black sesame paste and sugar and mix to combine.
  14. I elected to do a petal frosting design for this cake in the pictures, but have also slathered it on roughly with a offset spatula with perfect results. As you frost, the cream may warm up and drip. Just put the frosting bowl and piping bag in the fridge for a few minutes to firm up before continuing.
  15. Store in the fridge fairly well wrapped for a few days, if it lasts that long. The unfrosted cake can be made a couple days in advance and kept well wrapped at room temperature before using.
* You can also use black sesame seeds for the cake batter instead of the black sesame paste. Use 80g (1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons) of whole black sesame seeds ground in a spice grinder. Instead of 120 ml (1/2 cup) of water, use 180 ml (3/4 cup). The oil measurement remains the same. This gives the cake more of a flecked, tweedy appearance and a lighter sesame flavor. When I try the cakes side by side, I like the one using the sesame paste better for its deeper sesame flavor. Either way, you're using 80 grams of sesame.

**There will be leftover whipping cream. We like to dollop extra on slices when served, if the eater requests it. Usually, this is a child.
Recipe by story of a kitchen at