Boston Cream Pie for a 60th Birthday

Its was my Dad’s 60th birthday this weekend, well actually its not for another month but we decided to hold a little surprise birthday party for him and his friends. My Dad has a pretty sweet tooth, actually most of my family do, and so normally Dad would have chosen what I would make for him but as we were doing it as a surprise party my mum and I chose for him. Both my parents went to America for the first time 5 years ago and fell in love with the country, they now go regularly sometimes even twice a year, under a pretense of ‘work’ though of course. It turns out they both developed a fondness for doughnuts from Dunkin Doughnuts so when my copy of Sky High Cakes arrived and I saw this recipe, we agreed this would be the ideal choice as my Dad’s favourite pick from Dunkin is the Boston Cream. Whilst we thought at the time he may have caught on to the secret in the end the little party  was kept under wraps and my Dad had a great time, the cake was pretty good too. This book is full of wonderful looking recipes and I cant wait to try more, i’m thinking that next up will be the Dulce De Leche cake, but with so many to choose from that may be a difficult decision.

Right lets get to the good and the  bad. The cake was great it was light and flavourful and the custard filling also tasted great. I did have a couple of problems though. The custard didn’t set easily, needing a long time in the fridge to finally set up, but was really tasty once it did. My biggest problem though was the chocolate. The book is another American cookbook which calls for an ingredient I cant get, this time half and half. I chose, as an alternative, what I thought would be closest. It turns out single cream still has too high a fat content so rather than a glaze I ended up with more of a ganache. In the end though I was pretty happy and the most important person, my Dad, gave it his approval and well thats all I was aiming for.

Boston Cream Pie – Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes

2 Cups Cake Flour

2 Tsp Baking Powder

1 1/2 Cups Sugar

8 Eggs, Seperated

1 Tblsp Fresh Lemon Juice

6 Tblsp Vegetable Oil

2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

Vanilla Custard (Recipe follows)

Chocolate Glaze (Recipe Follows)

1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line the bottoms of three 9-inch round cake pans with a round of parchment or waxed paper.

2. Sift together the cake flour, baking powder, and 1/2 cup of the sugar. Set these aside. (As cake flour is unavailable here I use the cheat of replacing 2 tblsp of flour in every cup with 2 tblsp of cornflour)

3. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, lemon juice, oil and vanilla until blended.

4. In a large clean mixer bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer on high speed until foamy. Gradually add the remaining 1 cup sugar and continue beating until moderately stiff peaks form that droop slightly.

5. Mix a quarter of the whipped whites into the yolks then carefully and gently fold the yolk mixture back into the remaining whites without overmixing. Now sift about a third of the dry ingredients over the egg mixture and carefully fold in. Repeat this step in 2 more additions. You dont want to deflate the batter the batter by handling it roughly or by dumping a large quantity of flour into the batter all at once. Divide the batter among 3 prepared pans.

6. Bake for 15-20 mins, or until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean and the cake springs back when touched lightly. Let the layers cool completely in their pans on wire racks before turning out. To unmold run a blunt knife around the edge of the pans and invert to remove the cakes and carefully peel off the paper liners.

7. To assemble the cake, put one layer, flat side up, on a cake stand. Spread half the vanilla custard on this layer, smoothing it right out to the edge. Repeat with the second layer. Place the third layer on top and pour the chocolate glaze over, smoothing and spreading so the glaze drips over the sides.

Vanilla Custard – Makes about 2 1/2 Cups

2 Tblsp Cornstarch

2 Cups Whole Milk

6 Egg Yolks

3/4 Cups Sugar

2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

1. In a large heatproof bowl, combine the cornstarch and 1/4 cup of the milk. Stir until smooth and free of any lumps. Whisk in the egg yolks and set aside close to your stove.

2. In a medium saucepan, combine the remaining 1 3/4 cups milk and the sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

3. Ladle about a third of the hot sweetened milk into the yolk mixture in a thin stream, whisking the mixture constantly so as to not cook the eggs. Gradually whisk this yolk mixture into the remaining hot milk in the pan. Whisking constantly bring just to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and boil gently, still whisking for a further minute.

4. Transfer the custard to a bowl and whisk in the vanilla . Let cool slightly, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled.

Chocolate Glaze – Makes about 1 Cup

1/4 Cup half-and-half

2 Tblsp Light Corn Syrup

1 Cup Bittersweet or Semisweet Chocolate (about 6 ounces) in small pieces

1. In a small saucepan combine the half-and-half and corn syrup. Bring to a simmer over moderate-low heat stirring to blend. Remove from the heat, add the chocolate, and let stand for 1 minute. Whisk until smooth.


11 responses to “Boston Cream Pie for a 60th Birthday

  1. so excited to hear that you are enjoying the book. your boston cream pie looks great even if you did have trouble with the glaze. sometimes i use half and half instead of cream-(it is an american thing) but it is made from equal parts of regular milk and heavy cream (single cream would be best). allow the mixture to cool enough so that it thickens but do not try to work with it if it is cold. it should still pour but not be so thin and runny that it slides off the cake. good luck and thanks for the kind words!
    alisa huntsman

  2. Thanks Alisa really love the book cant wait to try out something else

  3. My mouth is watering looking at these pictures! My dad loves Boston Cream Donuts too. They just opened a Dunkin Donuts here in Franklin TN. Looking forward to more opening soon I hope!

  4. Looks absolutely delicious – another good review for that book! I love Boston Cream donuts AND pie.

    For half and half you can combine single cream with a bit of milk.

  5. huntfortheverybest

    wow…looks great.

  6. Edd I’m a bit late to this post, but I wanted to say that seeing this last week inspired me to make the same thing for my own birthday cake this past weekend! With only two of us in this house baked goods often go stale before we can finish them, but we’re already almost done this one. Yours is prettier than mine, though 🙂

    • Happy Birthday. Wow thats a lot of cake in just a few days good going, im glad someone thought it was pretty I wasnt too happy with it

  7. Pingback: Pierre Herme’s “Macaron” « He-Eats

  8. Wow that cake looks wonderful, and yummy! I have never made a Boston Cream Cake. I have a recipe for it, just haven’t made it yet. You have isnspired me to try it. 10,000 hits is really inpressive!!! I’m new to blogging and don’t quite have everything done on my blog that I would like to have done. My husband is the computer person, he’s going to redo some of it, so I can post pitures like yours. Anyway your cake looks yummy, now ireally want to make one!!! 🙂 Love your blog!!

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