Recipe by Sarah Phillips © 2006 Sarah Phillips CraftyBaking.com
Photo and cake by Kelly Hong © Sarah Phillips
This version of Boston cream pie is extraordinary. The cake, a hot milk sponge, dates to the late 1800's. It is especially tender, light, and delicate.
The recipe is from Eliza Leslie’s 1851 cookbook, Directions for Cookery, which has been adapted by Greg Patent The layers are filled with a beautifully smooth baked cream custard, really a crème brûlée without the sugar topping, flavored with vanilla and stick cinnamon. The glaze is a silky-smooth chocolate ganache. Serve small portions of this rich dessert at a fancy tea party or after a fairly light meal.
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SARAH SAYS: My latest blog post for the NY TIMES: http://www.nytimes.com/info/cake/
June 21, 2010 9:26 AM ET Not a pie at all, but a cake, the famed Boston Cream Pie consists of two layers of Sponge or butter cake filled with a thick custard and finished with a chocolate glaze. Careful research by Greg Patent, a baker and cookbook author, shows that the recipe evolved from Washington Pie, not from one used at Boston's Parker House Hotel (today the Omni Parker House) as previously thought, except for the use of a chocolate fondant as a glaze. Washington Pie appeared in many cookbooks prior to 1856, and was popular well into the twentieth century. The recipe directs the cook to bake the batter in pie plates, more accessible in those days than cake pans, and the name stuck. Sarah Phillips, founder, CraftyBaking.com, a baking advice and recipe site.
KELLY SAYS: "OK, the Boston Cream Pie was DELISH!...Rich, decadent and truly YUMMY!!! Hubby was thrilled."