Debbie Dance Uhrig
Remember last week when I said I was going to give you some exciting tips? Well, I lied! The truth is it was eaten! Not kidding, the tips had to do with freezing and reheating a casserole in a rather unique fashion. I tried to hold onto it, but no joking, the guys ate it! If you have a teenager at home you know exactly what I mean!
I do think you’ll enjoy the light and refreshing Boston Crème Pie recipe. I actually just finished this one. As Boston Crème Pies go; this is my version and I’ve included a nice chocolate ganache to go with it. An interesting aspect of this recipe is the fact that I had no idea folks really ate chocolate on the top of the cake/pie. Rewind to my childhood, my mother, Betty, doesn’t like chocolate all that much. So when we had Boston Crème Pie there was never any chocolate present. Today I would tell you that I really enjoy my Boston Crème Pie with fresh fruit in a homemade sauce.
First, let’s clarify why it’s called pie and not cake. In the old days this dessert was usually baked in pie pans because most pioneer women didn’t own 8 or 9 inch round baking pans. So they baked the cakes in pie pans. There are actually two ways to bake the cake portion. Some will place the entire batter in one baking pan and then cut the cake in half after baking. Personally I find it easier to evenly divide the batter and bake in two cake pans. Whichever version you prefer is what you do.
Most versions of this recipe have filling only in the middle of the cake/pie. Mine has enough filling leftover to place it on the top too, which I rather like. I purchase a blueberry sauce by Persimmon Hill Farms called: Blueberry Amaretto. I would use this in a heartbeat as a topper to my Boston Crème Pie. This would allow the addition of fresh blueberries too. If you wanted to get real creative you could omit the extra filling over the top and put a ‘very thick’ fruit sauce on top of the pie. Then….add the chocolate ganache. All these steps turn the rather simple dessert into something a bit more glamorous and calorie filled.
If I wanted to serve this for a large group of guests I would consider baking all the cake portions in advance, wrapping and freezing. Then you could quickly make the filling and make Boston Crème Pies right and left. Not a bad idea for large events.
I think this dessert is a great closure for heavy meals like steak dinners, heavy pasta meals and entrees that are very rich. It also keeps the budget in check in the event you spent most of your cash on a prime cut of meat or fresh seafood.
This past week I finished up several new recipes and I’m getting closer at having the culinary school ready to open on March 12th. Our family enjoyed the beautiful weather this past weekend by either walking or biking the trail system here in Branson. For those who aren’t aware we have beautiful biking and hiking trails near Table Rock Lake. We shuttled teenagers and bikes to several trailheads and walked lakeside ourselves.
Don’t forget next weekend I’ll be at Cockrill’s Mercantile doing a book signing from 11am -2pm. This is just south of Lee’s Summit, Missouri, on old Highway 50. Ladies if you haven’t been to this wonderful destination you simply must! For the men who like to cook, you’ll enjoy it likewise. It’s a great March get-away and simply a great place to be! Simply yours, The Covered Dish. www.thecovereddish.com
Boston Cream Pie
1 cup sugar
3 whole eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup skim milk
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) salted butter
Cream sugar to eggs for 1-2 minutes; add vanilla. Blend until smooth, the batter will be rather ripply when you lift the beater head. Place the flour, baking powder and salt together and whisk. Combine the butter and skim milk, heat in microwaveable measuring cup until butter is almost melted; stir to blend. Alternately pour the dry ingredients into the sugar mixture and then the butter/milk, mixing to blend. The batter is not of a thick nature, it’s actually rather thin.
Spray 2 (8-inch) cake pans with vegetable spray and line with parchment paper. Pour the batter evenly between the two pans. Mine was approximately 2 1/2 cups plus about a tablespoon of batter per pan. Bake @ 300 degrees for approximately 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow cakes to cool for about 10-12 minutes before inverting. Use a thin plastic knife to loosen the sides of the pan, remove parchment paper gently. Cover with a tea towel and allow to return to room temperature. (Because of how thin the cakes are, they don’t take very long to cool.) Once the cakes are cool put down one cake on a platter and place the filling in between the two cakes. My recipe for the filling was enough so that I could also put filling on the top of the cake. (Which my husband loved.) Then I covered with a generous drizzle of ganache.
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Mix together 1 cup sugar and 1/4 cup flour. Stir in 2 eggs and 2 cups milk. Cook over medium/medium low heat until filling coves to a boil & thickens. Remove from heat and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla. May also be done over a double boiler. Allow entire mixture to cool before putting between the two cake rounds. (There will be enough to put it over the top too, if desired.)
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
4 ounces semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate, broken into small pieces.
In a saucepan place cream and bring to a boil. (In a microwave it’s about 1 minute.) Remove from the heat and drop in the chopped chocolate pieces. Use a whisk and combine until mixture is totally smooth. To give a checker board look to the top, place the ganache in a small Ziploc bag, trim the corner making a small opening. After you apply the extra filling to the top of the cake/pie then drizzle the ganache back and forth making the crisscross look. Completely cool before serving. May allow ganache to drizzle down sides if desired.
The cake body for this is more like a sponge cake, very light in appearance. It is perfectly fine to bake in 2 cake rounds versus only 1 cake pan. Many cooks will bake the cake in one pan and then cut the cake in half. It’s all what you desire.