Boston Cream Pie

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Given my recent success with pastry cream, something I had previously struggled with, I decided a Boston Cream Pie would be my next project. Not only is it delicious, but it brings back so many wonderful memories. Mostly of my Aunty Cynthia, who I haven’t seen since I was probably about 14 years old due to distance.

My family is from Trinidad and Tobago, and my parents oh so selflessly decided to give up their home, family, friends, and what they knew to come to America to live and give my brother and I more options for our future. This was especially hard on my mother, considering all of her immediate family was still in Trinidad, yet she went on for her children (THANK YOU MOMMY!!!!).

But not all was lost, thanks to American Airlines and frequent flyer miles, my Aunt Cynthia, my mother’s oldest sister, would come to visit us often when we were younger.  In preparation for these visits, my mom would get EVERYTHING ready for her. I would see a huge smile appear on my mom’s face as well as a bit of stress as to make sure she doesn’t let her sister down! And every hour or so I would hear “Well we should get this…Cynthia loves this”

What does my Aunty Cynthia like? Coach, Banana Republic, and Boston Cream Pie. I am not so sure she really liked Boston Cream Pie, but Greg and I did and it definitely put a bit more excitement to her visits (that and the endless supply of hotel toiletries she would bring us from her business trips)

So I present to you, Boston Cream Pie

Ingredients

Vanilla Pastry Cream

  • 2 cups half-and- half
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • a pinch of salt
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Sponge Cake

  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar

Chocolate Ganache Topping

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 8 0z chopped semisweet chocolate
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Vanilla Pastry Cream

1. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, heat the half-and-half, 6 tablespoons of sugar, and salt over medium heat to simmer; stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar

2. While the half and half is heating, whisk together egg yolks and remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar in a medium bowl

  • When combined, add cornstarch and continue to whisk until fully combined

3. When the half-and-half begins to simmer, slowly start to pour it into the egg mixture, whisking constantly as to not cook the eggs

4. Return mixture to the saucepan over medium heat and continue to whisk constantly until it begins to thicken and bubble

  • Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla extract

5. Place the pastry cream into a medium bowl and cover with plastic wrap, ensuring that the plastic wrap touches the pastry cream so that a skin does not form

6. Allow to chill in the fridge for 3 hours – 2 days

Sponge Cake

Use the lower middle rack and preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 9″ cake pans with parchment paper and butter the sides

1. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt

2. Combine the milk and butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat until butter melts

  • Remove from heat, stir in vanilla extract and set aside

3. Separate the eggs, placing 3 of the egg whites in the bowl for your stand mixer and the remaining 2 eggs and 3 yolks in a separate bowl

4. With the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until foamy on low speed

  • Increasing the speed to medium, gradually add 6 tablespoons of sugar and beat until soft peaks form
  • Transfer egg whites to a clean bowl

5. Place the yolk and whole egg mixture in the stand mixture and beat on medium high speed with the remaining 6 tablespoons of sugar until the mixture is a pale yellow (~5 minutes)

6. Add the egg whites to the pale yellow egg mixture and sprinkle the flour mixture on top

7. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the mixture to combine in 12 strokes

  • Make a well on the side of the bowl and pour in the butter mixture
  • Continue to fold mixture together until fully combined

8. Divide batter equally between the 2 cake pans and cake for about 16 minutes, until the tops are light brown

9. Immediately run a knife along the edge of the pans to loosen cakes and invert the cakes onto a clean kitchen towel. Gently peel the parchment paper away and allow cakes to cool on a wire rack

Chocolate Ganache Glaze

1. Combine heavy cream and corn syrup in a heavy bottomed saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat

2. Remove from heat, add the chocolate, cover the pan and allow to stand for 8 minutes

  • Stir in vanilla extract and allow to cool

Assembly

1. Place one of the cake layers on the cake board and place 4 cut strips of parchment paper along the perimeter to catch the chocolate glaze as it falls

2. Spread the pastry cream evenly on the top of the cake, leaving the tiniest bit of space between the pastry cream and the circumference of the cake

3. Top with second layer of the cake and gently press down

4. Pour glaze onto the center of the cake and allow to flow over the sides

5. Let cake stand for about 1 hour before serving

Enjoy!

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