Recipe for Caramelised Miso Truffles by James Campbell

This dessert contains white miso, which is less salty than the type that is typically used when making stock.


WordsClémence Leleu

Mowie Kay © Ryland Peters & Small

What if the fermented paste held so dear in Japanese cuisine ventured beyond its traditional uses such as ramen or soups to wind up in sweet dishes? This is the experiment undertaken by pastry chef James Campbell who, in his book Japanese Pâtisserie, shares a recipe for caramelised miso truffles. 

To achieve this, he uses a particular type of miso—shiro miso or white miso—made from soy beans and rice. It is very young and therefore is not fermented for very long, and it has a much less salty flavour than traditional miso, being almost sweet. 

These miso chocolate truffles can be eaten fresh but, as the chef explains, ‘these little beauties are easy to whip up and can be made in advance and frozen. Alternatively, they will keep nicely in the fridge for up to a week.’

Makes 20 truffles


Inner truffle

50 g caster sugar

200 g sweet miso paste (shiro miso)

200 ml whipping cream

500 g dark/bittersweet chocolate, chopped

400 g milk chocolate, chopped

60 g butter, diced


Outer truffle

100 g dark/bittersweet chocolate

50 g cocoa powder 


Put the sugar into a saucepan and set over a medium heat. As the sugar starts to melt and caramelise, whisk in the miso paste followed by the whipping cream. Bring the mixture to the boil, then remove the pan from the heat and add the dark chocolate and milk chocolate. 

Allow the chocolate to melt, then add the diced butter and stir occasionally until melted.

Pour the truffle mixture into a container and place in the fridge for one hour to set.  

Once completely set, use a spoon or a melon baller to scoop out rough little balls of around 8–10 cm in diameter. Don’t worry about the shape too much at this stage as you can neaten them later. Transfer the chocolates to a prepared baking sheet lined with baking parchment and put in the freezer to set firm again, for about another hour. 

Once firm, roll the chocolates between the palms of your hands to shape into individual inner truffles—they do not need to be perfectly round. Put them back in the freezer for one hour to firm up, ready for dipping.  

Melt half of the dark chocolate by blasting quickly in the microwave for around 30–60 seconds, then beat in the remaining chocolate until melted. Prepare the cocoa powder in a shallow dish or plate.

Put about a teaspoon of the melted chocolate in the palm of your hand and roll a truffle between your palms to give a delicate, even coating. Deposit into the cocoa powder and roll to give a generous coating. 

As you finish each truffle, transfer them to a second prepared baking sheet, this time lined with clingfilm, and return the full batch to the fridge until the chocolate coating has set.


Japanese Pâtisserie (2017), a recipe book by James Campbell, is published by Ryland Peters & Small.

James Campbell has worked as a pastry chef in various Michelin starred restaurants such as Gary Rhodes’ Rhodes in the Square and the Mandarin Oriental in London. Since 2013, he has been Product Development Manager for desserts at Marks & Spencer, and it was through this position that he discovered Japan and acquired a passion for its culinary culture. In 2015, James Campbell was a semi-finalist on the BBC series Bake Off: Crème de la Crème.

Japanese Pâtisserie is a book that James Campbell designed to offer fusion recipes that bring Western classics together with key ingredients in Japanese cuisine. It contains 60 recipes featuring yuzu, sesame, miso, matcha, and sake.

Japanese Patisserie by James Campbell, published by Ryland Peters & Small - Mowie Kay © Ryland Peters & Small