It was the year 1856. Booker T. Washington, Nicola Tesla and L. Frank Baum were born. Slavery was an issue dividing the United States. John Muir wrote about dangers to Redwood forests, the first Kindergarten in the U.S. was formed, and most importantly to dessert, the Boston Cream Pie was created.
Layers of vanilla sponge cake filled with pastry cream, topped with a rich, chocolate ganache ~ this vintage Boston Cream Pie recipe may stray a bit from the original 1856 version, but it’s the version most of us know and love.
This isn’t a difficult recipe but it does take some time, and you’ll want to prep your ingredients beforehand so you have everything you need. The filling is more like a pudding and you might want to find an extra spoon to sample the leftovers. What this recipe post lacks in pictures will make up for with the way this recipe looks and tastes. It’s really tough to take pics and bake at the same time, especially when you are eager to get the cake finished so you can tackle it with a fork! See the recipe notes for a very simple chocolate ganache to pour over the top of your Boston Cream Pie.
- SPONGE LAYERS:
- ½ cup cold water
- 2 eggs, separated
- 1 cup sifted granulated sugar
- 1 cup sifted cake flour
- ¾ tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- ½ tsp. lemon flavoring
- 2 cups milk
- 6 Tbsp. flour
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ tsp. salt
- 2 eggs
- ¼ cup granulated sugar (yes, two of them)
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- 1 Tbsp. vanilla or almond extract
- Sponge instructions: Add water to egg yolks in large mixing bowl, then beat with electric beater until foamy and tripled in volume. Now add sifted sugar gradually, while still beating. Continue to beat until thick and lemon colored, about 10 minutes. Then sift together flour, baking powder, salt; gently stir into yolk mixture with extract. Now beat egg white stiff; fold into yolk mixture. Pour into 2, 8-inch layer pans, 1¼ inch deep, lined on bottom with paper (parchment or wax paper). Bake in oven at 350* for 25-30 minutes. Cool in pans on rack.
- Filling instructions: Scald milk in top of double boiler. Combine flour, ¼ cup sugar, and salt in medium bowl. Add a little scalded milk while stirring. Return to double boiler, and cook over rapidly boiling water, while stirring, until smooth and thickened enough to mound slightly - about 15 minutes. Break eggs into same bowl; beat with fork, while adding ¼ cup sugar. Slowly stir in milk mixture. Return to double boiler; cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in butter, cool, cover, chill. Add flavoring and spread between cake layers. Ice if desired.