For the month of February, the Cake Slice Bakers’ popular choice was the Boston Cream Pie. I actually got pretty excited about this cake because I’ve never made one before (or even tried a slice for that matter). So experiencing a new cake sounded like fun, plus all the pictures I’ve seen of a Boston Cream Pie look so delicious.
Like I said before, Boston Cram Pies are traditionally round, but I wanted to make something a little smaller because my mom would be out of town and my sister doesn’t like custardy things, so I didn’t want half a cake to go to waste. (Maybe I should just invest in a smaller cake pan.) So instead of pouring the batter into that standard round tin, I cut the recipe in half and used an 8x4 inch loaf pan. This is probably the only thing that went smoothly, the batter that is.
I actually had a lot of trouble making this cake, and I’m sure I’m partly/mostly at fault. The batter was perfectly smooth and velvety and baked up like a dream. However, after a day, the cake became a tad bit dry, and after the second day, it was just… well dry. One of my fellow bakers had mentioned the dryness so when I went to make the cake, I added an extra egg yolk to see if it would help, I don’t think it did.
The last problem was totally my fault. I thought we had whipping cream for the ganache, so I didn’t think to buy any at the store. It turns out that it was half & half that I had seen. Whoops. Oh well, I thought. I could use half & half, but just not as much. Then I found out that I didn’t have any of my bar chocolate because one particular person in my family didn’t know what it was for and had eaten my chocolate (two bars) as a snack over the period of a monstrous kitchen cleanse. So instead of that, I used Ghirardelli chocolate chips, hoping I would get the same results. When making the ganache, I don’t think I let the milk become hot enough or maybe I wasn’t paying attention, but I didn’t get all of the chocolate melted, so my ganache was really more just like a grainular liquid pool of chocolate. I still poured it over the cake though.
So in the end, I didn’t really have success with this recipe. I may try it again if the other Cake Slice Bakers’ cakes came out batter, but if not, I guess I’ll just have to try a proper Boston Cream Pie some other time.
Boston Cream Loaf
Adapted from The Cake Book by Tish Boyle
Makes one 8x4 inch loaf
Hot Milk Sponge Cake
¾ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
½ + ¼ tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
¼ cup milk
2 tbsp unsalted butter, cubed
1 egg, room temperature
1 egg yolk, room temperature
¼ cup + 2 tbsp sugar
½ tsp Vanilla Extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally spray the loaf pan with Pam (or something similar); set aside.
- In a medium bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, and salt three or four times.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the milk and butter. Heat just until the butter has completely melted. Take saucepan off heat and set it aside to cool.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk together the egg and egg yolk on high speed for about a minute. Gradually add in the sugar and beat for another 6 minutes or until the mixture has become a very pale yellow and has tripled in size. Add in the vanilla extract.
- Detach the bowl from the mixer and fold in about a third of the flour mixture with a rubber spatula. Once that third has been incorporated, repeat with the rest of the flour. The mixture will be very stiff and not look like batter at all, don’t worry, it will once the milk is added. Speaking of milk, reheat the milk and butter mixture. Add it all into the bowl and mix. This will give you a work out. It will seem that the batter is drowning in milk, but give it time, it will smooth out eventually.
- Pour/scrape batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for about 15 minutes (I strongly advise against baking any longer). Cool in the cake pan for 10 minutes. Invert the cake, and place right side up on a cooling rack.
3 egg yolks, room temperature
¼ cup sugar
2 tbsp corn starch
1 cup milk
1 tbsp butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ cup heavy cream
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, and corn starch until pale and thick. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, bring the milk to a gentle boil. Remove from heat and add a third of it to the egg yolk mixture. Whisk the egg yolk and milk mixture vigorously. This is to temper the eggs. Return mixture to saucepan and whisk continuously over medium-high heat for about a minute. Remove the pan from the heat, scrape the bottom of the pan with a spatula, and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the butter until melted.
- Immediately strain the custard through a sieve into a medium bowl. Whisk in the vanilla. Cover the surface with plastic wrap, let the mixture cool to room temperature, and then transfer to the fridge until well cooled.
- Just before assembling the cake, transfer the custard to the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the heavy cream and beat the mixture with the whisk attachment on high until soft peaks form.
3 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
½ cup heavy cream
½ tsp vanilla extract
- In a small saucepan, bring the cream to a boil. Remove from heat and add chocolate. Stir continuously until chocolate is fully melted and the mixture is smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract. Pour the glaze into a heat-proof bowl. Cover the surface with plastic wrap and let it cool for about 10 minutes.
- Using a serrated knife, cut the cake horizontally in half. Place the bottom half of the cake on a serving platter, cut side up. Scrape as much filling as you want ontorecommend leaving a half inch border so the filling doesn’t ooze out. Top with the second layer, cut side down.
- Pour warm glaze over the top of the cake, allowing it to drizzle down the sides. Serve immediately or store in the fridge for up to a day. Let the cake come to room temperature before serving.