Saturday, October 22, 2011

National Boston Cream Pie Day

By Diane Forrest,

About 5 years ago my son had the opportunity to go to Boston to hear the band Boston.  He was so excited that he got his first speeding ticket on the way to the airport.  Beside the music group, Boston is famous for many things, such as Boston Baked beans, the bar Cheers, The Tea Party and Paul Revere's Ride, the Red Sox and Boston Cream Pie.

In fact, Boston Cream Pie is the official dessert of Massachusetts.  It was created at the Parker House Hotel in the early 40's.  In fact, it is not really a pie at all.  It is two halves of a sponge cake and a creamy center of vanilla custard.   It is topped with a chocolate glaze and maybe even some powedered sugar and strawberry.

Im telling you all this because today is National Boston Cream Pie Day.  This is a great dessert because it combines cake, custard and chocolate!  What could be better?  While I have never seen it on the menus of restaurants I have visited, I can always find it at cafeterias such as the one in the hospitals where I have worked.  I have tried never to pass up an opportunity to indulge in this delicious treat.

Today, as we celebrate National Boston Cream Pie Day, it is a great opportunity for you to sample some for yourself.  Below is an easy recipe to try if you want to make your own, so enjoy, and Cheers!

Boston Cream Pie

  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup light cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 (1 ounce) squares semisweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup light cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans. Sift the all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder and salt together and set aside.
  2. In a deep bowl cream 6 tablespoons of the butter with 3/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the 2 eggs, one at a time, then beat in the 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture alternately with the 1/2 cup of the milk in 3 additions, Beating the batter smooth after each addition. Divide the batter between the 2 prepared pans.
  3. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 15 minutes or until cakes begin to shrink away from the sides of the pans and centers spring back when lightly touched. Turn the cakes onto wire racks to cool.
  4. To Make The Filling: Combine the 1/2 cup light cream with 1/4 cup of the milk and cook over medium heat until bubbles begin to form around the edge of the pan. Immediately add 1/4 cup of the sugar and the salt, stirring until dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat.
  5. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup of the milk with the cornstarch and whisk to remove lumps. Whisk in the 2 eggs. Add the hot cream mixture in a thin stream, whisking constantly. Return to the mixture to the saucepan, bring to a boil, and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the custard thickens and is smooth (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in the 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and allow to cool to room temperature.
  6. To Make The Chocolate Frosting: In a heavy saucepan over low heat, stir the chocolate pieces and 2 tablespoons butter until they are completely melted. Remove from the heat and, stirring constantly, add the 1/4 cup light cream in a thin steady stream. When mixture is smooth, stir in the confectioners' sugar and beat vigorously. Stir in the 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.
  7. To Assemble Cake: Spread the cooled filling over one the cooled cakes and place the second cake on top. Pour the chocolate frosting evenly over the top allowing it to spill down the sides.

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