Cream: Boston Cream Pie by Ivanka

posted by Ivanka 05-03-102 8:47 AM

Flo Braker's version from this Wednesday's SF Chronicle.
Boston Cream Pie

Butter Cake:
2 cups sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs at room temperature
2/3 cup buttermilk at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 ounces unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar

Custard Filling:
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean
3 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 ounce unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon dark rum
1/2 cup heavy cream, whipped

Chocolate Glaze:
7 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
3/4 cup (6 ounces) heavy cream

Cake: Adjust rack in lower third of oven, 5 to 6 inches from bottom; preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Fit a 9-inch round of parchment or wax paper into the pan.

Pour the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a sieve. Sift onto a sheet of wax paper; set aside.
Crack the eggs into a small bowl; whisk to combine yolks and whites.

Pour the buttermilk into a liquid measuring cup, add the vanilla and stir to combine.

Put the butter in the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer. Using the flat beater (paddle), cream the butter on medium speed until it is lighter in color, clings to the sides of the bowl and has a satiny appearance. (This should take no longer than 30 to 45 seconds.) Maintaining the same speed, add the sugar in a steady stream. When all the sugar is added, stop the machine and scrape the mixture clinging to the sides of the bowl into the center. Continue to cream at the same speed until the mixture is very light in color and fluffy in appearance.

With the mixer still on medium speed, very cautiously pour in the eggs, tablespoon by tablespoon. Continue to cream, stopping the mixer and scraping the sides of the bowl at least once. When the mixture appears fluffy, white and increased in volume (it almost resembles whipped cream cheese and any grainy appearance has disappeared), detach the flat beater and bowl from the mixer.

With the aid of a metal icing spatula, lift one quarter of the flour mixture and sprinkle it over the creamed mixture. Stir it in with a rubber spatula. Then pour in one third of the vanilla-flavored milk, stirring to blend. Repeat this procedure, alternating dry and liquid ingredients, ending with the flour. With each addition, scrape the sides of the bowl, and continue mixing until smooth.

Spoon the batter into the pan. Using a rubber spatula, spread the batter, working from the center outward, creating a slightly raised ridge around the outside rim.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the top of the cake springs back slightly when touched lightly in the center, and the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan. Place cake (in its pan) on a rack and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Run a small metal spatula knife between the cake and the pan before releasing the sides of the springform. Place a cooling rack on top of the cake and invert it onto another rack. Carefully lift off the bottom of the springform pan. Slowly peel off the parchment liner, turn the paper over so that the sticky side is up, and place it on top of the cake. Cover with a rack, invert the layer right-side up and remove the original rack. (Reusing the liner in this way prevents the layer from sticking to the rack while it cools and also provides a temporary base for lifting and storing.) Let the cake cool completely.

To store: If you plan to use the cake within 24 hours, wrap the layers individually in plastic wrap and store them at room temperature. To freeze, cover the plastic-wrapped layers with foil. Label each package, indicating contents and date. Freeze for no longer than 2 weeks.

Custard Filling: Place a large sieve over a 1-quart mixing bowl. Pour the milk and half of the sugar into a 1 1/2-quart saucepan. Split the vanilla bean with a small knife, scrape out the seeds and place them in the milk.

Put the egg yolks in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Add the remaining sugar and whisk to combine. Stir in the flour and set aside.

Bring the milk mixture just to a boil over medium heat. Turn off heat and pour about half of the milk mixture into the yolk mixture, whisking until combined. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan; whisk to combine; then return to medium-low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a boil (this should take about 1 to 2 minutes). At this point it will thicken. Continue to stir and simmer until it is smooth and thick, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and add the butter, stirring until melted and incorporated. Pour through the sieve into the mixing bowl.

Cover the surface of the pastry cream with plastic wrap, and poke 6 to 8 slits in it with the tip of a sharp knife to allow steam to escape. (May refrigerate for up to 3 days.)

When ready to assemble the dessert, stir the vanilla and rum into the custard, then fold in the whipped cream.

To assemble: Split the cake into 2 layers. Place the bottom layer on a cardboard round. Spread the filling evenly over the layer. Center the other layer on top.

Dark chocolate glaze: Put the chocolate in a medium bowl. Pour the cream into a small saucepan, place over medium-low heat and bring to a boil. Immediately pour the cream over the chocolate; whisk until the chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth and shiny.

Set the cake on a wire rack over a jelly-roll pan or similar pan with sides.
Pour the chocolate glaze over the cake to cover the top (if desired, let it drip down the sides of the cake).
Refrigerate the cake until an hour before serving. Using a serrated knife, cut the dessert into pie-shaped wedges, dipping the knife into hot water and wiping it dry before each slice.

Serves 12.

Variation: To serve this for Cinco de Mayo, instead of the pastry cream, fill the cake layers with store-bought Dulce de Leche ice cream. Place assembled cake on a sturdy baking sheet and place in freezer for about 30 minutes before covering securely with plastic wrap. Freeze until about 1 hour before serving (remove from freezer and set in the refrigerator until time to serve). Before cutting the cake, sprinkle powdered sugar over the top. Pass Mexican-inspired cinnamon-chocolate sauce at the table, along with some toasted sliced almonds.

Cinnamon-chocolate sauce: Put 8 ounces semisweet chocolate in a medium bowl. Pour 1 cup heavy cream into a medium saucepan, add a 3-inch piece of cinnamon stick and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cover, remove from the heat, and let stand for 5 minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Let stand for 2 minutes, then whisk until smooth and melted. Serve at once or reheat and serve later.

PER SERVING: 455 calories, 6 g protein, 49 g carbohydrate, 28 g fat (16 g saturated), 151 mg cholesterol, 138 mg sodium, 1 g fiber.

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