I thought it only right I make a cupcake version of a pie after I waxed poetic about pies being the new cupcake. The only problem? It’s a pie in name only. Boston cream pie is a delectable concoction of vanilla cake filled with pastry cream and covered in chocolate ganache. It was created by a chef at the Parker House Hotel in Boston and is the official dessert of Massachusetts.
I was forced to make two different batches, because I wasn’t 100% happy with the first, the ganache topped version.They tasted as if I had left something out. . .they needed something more. . .The ratio between topping and cupcake was off.
The second batch I frosted with the most delicious fudge frosting to ever cross my lips. I was much happier with the outcome but must confess the frosting stole the show. I didn’t mind!
I’ve seen some Boston Cream Pie cupcakes with the cake removed from the paper and sliced in half like a regular cake then filled. I don’t like it. The cream gushes out and they are no longer ‘portable’ the way I believe a cupcake is meant to be. The filling should be encased in the middle, like a surprise gift.
And here is my gift to you.
A delectable concoction of vanilla cake filled with pastry cream and covered in chocolate ganache and/or fudge frosting.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners.
- Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in a small bowl to combine.
- In a large bowl using an electric mixer beat butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add sugar gradually, beating until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl once or twice. Beat in vanilla extract. Beat in eggs one at a time, scraping down after each addition. Add flour mixture in 4 additions, alternately with the milk. Begin and end with the flour mixture, and beat briefly until smooth on low-medium speed after each addition.
- Divide batter evenly among cupcake wells. If using jam drop a rounded teaspoon full into the middle of each one. Bake for about 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center shows a few moist crumbs. The center should also spring back when lightly pressed.
- Cool pan on wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove cupcakes and continue cooling on rack. When cool use a small pointed knife to cut out the center: insert the knife at an angle halfway between edge and center and cut all the way around. Cut off the end so you have a flat piece of cake. Fill with a heaping tablespoon of pastry cream and top with the flat end. Cover with ganache or fudge frosting (or both).
- Heat the milk and vanilla extract in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until warm. Set it aside until it’s cool enough to touch, but still warm In a mixing bowl whisk egg yolks and sugar together until smooth then whisk in flour and salt.
- Pour the warm milk slowly into the egg mixture whisking constantly. Add the mixture back to the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly so the bottom doesn’t scorch. When it starts to bubble cook for 2 minutes longer than strain through a wire strainer into a small bowl to get rid of the lumps. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap over the surface of the cream and refrigerate until completely cool.
- Heat the heavy cream until boiling, remove from heat and add chocolate, cover and let sit five minutes. Gently stir until chocolate is smooth. If chocolate is still chunky place over low heat and whisk constantly until melted. Use immediately.
- In a large bowl with hand mixer on electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add 1 cup sugar gradually, beating until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl once or twice.
- Add remaining 3 cups sugar and milk, beat on high speed until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla extract and melted chocolate, beat until combined, then beat an additional 3 to 4 minutes until thick and fluffy. Frost cupcakes immediately.
Cupcakes, frosting and ganache adapted from Dede Wilson
Pastry Cream adapted from the Kitchn
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