Monday, December 12, 2011
Life has been all sorts of crazy lately. I've been finishing up my Christmas shopping, kicking some finals butt, and spending time with my brother before he leaves tomorrow. :( Yesterday we actually had a Christmas lunch with my mom's side of the family because my brother's leaving and some of my family is going to India for a wedding over Christmas. My cousins and I are all in the midst of finals so we couldn't even make it a dinner and stay late like usual. So it's been a little weird and early but hopefully with more traditions still to come, Christmas will feel semi normal this year.
I made this Boston Cream Pie last year for a Christmas gathering and it was a pretty big hit so I decided whip it up again for the lunch! Once again, it didn't disappoint.
This recipe has three parts so I started with the cake. Sift your dry ingredients into the bowl of a mixer. Make a well and pour the wet ingredients inside. Mix!
Pour the mixture into a separate bowl and set aside. Give the mixer bowl a little wash and dry. Put in your egg whites and cream of tartar and whip!
When it forms stiff peaks, grab the first mixture and pour it on top of the egg whites. Fold!
Pour the batter into a pie pan and bake. While that's going, make the pastry cream. Boil milk in saucepan and infuse with vanilla. Let that cool slightly and whip egg yolks, sugar, and cornstarch together until smooth.
Temper the egg mixture with a 1/4 cup of the hot milk. Mix well and add the rest of the milk. Strain the whole thing back into the pot and heat until thick and bubbling.
Pour the pastry cream into a bowl and let it cool slightly. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic onto the cream to prevent a skin from forming. *bleh!* Pop it in the fridge for a least an hour.
When cake is cool, cut it in half. Layer the bottom half with the custard and top with the other half.
Make the ganache topping and pour over the cake.
Refrigerate until you're ready to serve!
What is your favorite holiday dessert? Will you be trying anything new this year? :)
Boston Cream Pie
recipe adapted slightly from Food Network
For the Cake
1 cup + 2 tbsp cake flour, sifted
2/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup cooking oil
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla
2 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
Preheat oven to 350F. In a mixing bowl, combine first four dry ingredients. Make a well and add milk, oil, yolks, and vanilla. With a mixer, beat on low until well combined. Then beat on high for three minutes. Put mixture aside. In a mixing bowl, whip egg whites and cream of tartar until it forms stiff peaks. Pour egg yolk batter over egg whites and fold *carefully* until well combined. Pour batter into a greased 9 inch pie pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until top springs back. Invert pan on a wire rack and cool completely.
For the Pastry Cream
2 cups milk (whole, 2%, or 1%)
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped out (or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract)
6 egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tbsp unsalted butter
In a small saucepan, bring milk and vanilla bean seeds/extract to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Immediately remove from heat and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. In a small bowl, whisk sugar and egg yolks until fluffy. Add cornstarch and whisk until smooth. Slowly add 1/4 cup of the hot milk mixture and stir. Mix in the rest of the hot milk and add back to the pot through a strainer. Heat on medium until mixture thickens and bubbles. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Put it in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing it down on top of the cream to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for at least one hour. Pastry cream can be made up to 24 hours in advance.
For the Ganache
8 ounces semisweet chocolate
1/2-3/4 cup heavy cream
In a small saucepan, bring cream to a boil, stirring constantly. Pour hot cream over chocolate and stir until melted and smooth. Start by adding 1/2 cup and add more cream if you need to thin it out.
Cut the cooled cake in half, lengthwise. Put the bottom on a serving plate and spread the pastry cream on top. Put the other half of the cake on top. Pour ganache over the cake, letting it run over the sides. Store in the fridge until ready to serve!