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Boston Cream Pie

Winter has taken hold with a vengeance. The temperature has plummeted to 16 degrees for the high and there’s a foot of snow everywhere. What better to do than bake something I’ve never tried before, like Boston Cream Pie!

Boston Cream Pie Poster

 

Boston Cream Pie Ingredients:

  • Custard Filling:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg plus 3 egg yolks
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Cake:
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) salted butter
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Ganache:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ( 8 ounces) semisweet baking chocolate

There are so many versions of this recipe from very easy to complicated. I chose the easy route and here’s how you create this delectable delight. Assemblage is easy. Just make each part in order listed then put them all together. Remember to allow the eggs and butter to come to room temperature before you begin.

Boston  Cream  Pie

 

 

First make the custard cream filling by mixing in a saucepan the first three ingredients of the custard filling, using a whisk. Add an egg into dry ingredients and mix well. Separate three eggs and save the yolks. Add the yolks to your mixture along with the milk. Whisk everything together and cook over medium heat stirring constantly, for around 12 minutes, until thickened.

 

 

Remove saucepan from heat and add vanilla. Pour custard into a dish and cover with plastic wrap, making sure to make contact with the custard. This prevents a skin from forming on the custard. Place in fridge and chill for two hours.

 

While the custard is chilling, bake the cake. Prepare a 9” cake pan with an oil and flour coating on the pan. I also like to use parchment paper on the bottom of the pan. You simply lay a piece of parchment paper the size of your cake pan on the counter, then place cake pan on top. Score the parchment around the bottom of the cake pan with a knife or pair of scissors and then cut out your circle. Place the circle of parchment paper on the bottom of the cake pan. This makes it so easy to remove the cake from the pan after it’s finished baking.

Gather all ingredients and in order listed, start by creaming the butter and sugar in a stand mixer or by using a hand mixer. Mix the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and mix well. Sift the dry ingredients into a separate bowl. Add into the creamed butter and sugar mixture a little at a time alternately with the milk until all ingredients are mixed well.

 

Using a spatula place the cake batter into the prepared cake pan and bake at 350 for 30 to 35 minutes. Check at 30 minutes with a toothpick or knife edge by inserting into the center of the cake. If it comes out clean, the cake is done.

Cool for ten minutes then turn out onto a wire rack to cool. Peel off the parchment paper from the bottom of the cake. Allow to cool completely then slice the cake in half. Wrap the halves in plastic wrap and freeze for thirty minutes. This makes it easier to assemble the cake.

 

Just before you are ready to remove the cake from the freezer, make the chocolate ganache. Heat the cream in a saucepan on low to medium heat until boiling, stirring constantly. Once the cream comes to a boil remove from heat and add the chocolate. Stir the mixture until the chocolate is melted. The mixture will darken and look glossy. 

Now it’s time to assemble. Remove the cake from the freezer and place the top layer on a plate with the cut side up. Add the cream custard to the cake and smooth with an offset spatula. Now add the other half of the cake on top of the custard layer with the cake cut side down and press a little. You now have a cake sandwich! Using an offset spatula go around the sides of this cake a clean up any custard that has oozed out.

Make sure your Ganache is still warm and if not, heat it up a little to make it smooth enough to pour. Don’t go too far or the chocolate will break and you’ll have oil coming out of the chocolate. If that should happen, you’ll need to discard it and make a new batch.


Pour the Ganache over the top of the cake and allow it to drizzle down the side of the cake. Do not use a spatula to spread the ganache! You can use an offset spatula on the sides of the cake to help cover where cake is showing through, but not on the top.

Once you have finished pouring all the ganache place the cake in the fridge and cool for two to three hours before serving. The ganache will harden and turn shiny.

 

Why is this cake called a pie? Because back in the day when this delectable delight was created, pie tins and cake pans were used interchangeably. Yankee Magazine explains the reason for the name here.

Store any leftovers in fridge. Enjoy!

Much Love ~ Rhonda

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How to make candied Butternut Squash

How to make candied Butternut Squash

Who doesn’t love candy? Add that sweet goodness to a vegetable and yumminess is born! How does one make Candied Butternut Squash? Read on and grab the recipe. Your family will love this delicious side dish. It’s almost a meal in itself.


Butternut Squash

This summer I grew Butternut Squash and although the yield wasn’t as high as I’d hoped, there was still enough squash to have a small stash for winter.


Here’s your grocery list for the recipe:

  • Butternut or Acorn Squash – (one squash makes two servings)
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Cloves or Allspice
  • Brown Sugar
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Bacon

How to make Candied Butternut Squash;

Wash the squash then cut in half. You will need one half per person depending on the size of the squash. Place in a shallow baking dish lined with foil. The foil makes for easy cleanup.

Butternut Squash cut in half
Seeds removed from squash

Scoop out all the seeds and membranes using a spoon and discard.

Add butter to squash

Next, you will add some pats of butter then sprinkle cinnamon generously over the butter and squash.


Continue on with the rest of your spices, sprinkling nutmeg, cloves or allspice, and a bit of salt. I don’t use measuring spoons for this recipe, so I can’t give exact measurements. Use your eyes and your senses to decide how much to use of each ingredient. A hint of caution here, cloves and allspice are very powerful so don’t go overboard.


Add bacon and brown sugar to squash

Now you are ready for the best part of the entire dish; the bacon and brown sugar!


Assemblage:

Lay as many strips of bacon over the squash as you desire. We like two pieces per slice of squash because we Love bacon! Make sure the bacon doesn’t fall down into the squash or it won’t crisp in the oven, because it will be lying in bacon and butter juices.

Lastly, sprinkle brown sugar liberally atop the bacon. It’s the brown sugar that makes the bacon and the squash taste like candy. If you prefer, you can use maple syrup instead of brown sugar.

Place the dish in a preheated 375-degree oven and bake, uncovered, for one hour. If you have a convection oven, keep an eye on your squash towards the last 15 minutes of baking, as this is the time when the bacon can become a bit too crispy because of the sugar. If your squash isn’t quite fork tender 45 minutes into baking but your bacon is overdone, simply cover with foil and lower the oven to 350 degrees.


Prepare for a feast;

Candied Butternut Squash

When your squash is finished cooking you can discard the fat built up in the hole of the squash, or if you like, you can mix it all in. I prefer to dump mine out so I don’t have all that fat in my diet. My husband loves butter and bacon grease, so he mixes his in with the squash. I know!


Final Thoughts:

Your family will love this dish because of the sweetness of the brown sugar, and the natural sweetness of the squash. It’s almost like eating warmed pumpkin pie or eating candy for dinner! I serve this dish with beef, such as Ribeye, or Tri-Tip. Candied Butternut Squash is almost a meal in itself so you don’t really need any more food to complete your dinner except maybe a nice glass of red wine.

Candied Butternut Squash is a perfect side dish for these wonderful Fall days. It would also make a perfect accompaniment to your Thanksgiving dinner. I hope you give this recipe a try!

Until we meet again, much Love! ~Rhonda

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Roasted Tomato Sauce Recipe ~

With Fall around the corner, the garden is winding down. All veggies are in ripen mode and I am harvesting tomatoes like crazy.  I thought I’d share my Roasted Tomato Sauce Recipe if you are looking for something new to do with all those fresh-picked tomatoes you have from your garden! One can only eat so much salad, right?

tomatoes from the garden

You can use fresh tomatoes from your local farmer’s market if you aren’t growing your own. I prefer Roma tomatoes because they have fewer seeds and a little more pulp. But as you can see, I also use regular tomatoes for their juice.

Here are the ingredients for the roasted tomato sauce recipe:
  1. 1 lb. Fresh Tomatoes (or more, depending on how much sauce you want to make)
  2. 1 or 2 large onions (2 if you’re going big)
  3. 1 to 2 heads of garlic  (separate cloves and use all)
  4. 4 to 6 tblsp. of Virgin Olive oil
  5. 1 tsp. Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
  6. 1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
  7. 1 tsp. crushed dry Basil
  8. 1 to 2 tsp. sugar
Here’s what you do:

Slice all tomatoes into halves and place them in a roasting pan with the skin sides up in one layer. Cut the onion into quarters and add to the pan. Next, separate your garlic into cloves and slightly mash, then add to the roasting pan. Drizzle the olive oil over all ingredients then add the salt, pepper, basil, and sugar. (Adjust oil and seasonings accordingly if you are making a bigger batch than mine.)

Now get your hands in there and mix up all the tomatoes, onion, garlic, etc. so that everything is nicely coated in the olive oil and spices. What a mess, but so much fun! Your pan will look like this:

Tomatoes for sauce

Now you are ready to roast the tomatoes:

Pop your pan into a preheated 350-degree oven and roast for 45 minutes or until the skins begin to blacken. Be careful when you open the oven door at the end of roasting because a bit of smoke may come out. Your kitchen will smell like heaven! This is what the roasted tomatoes look like when finished roasting:

 

roasted tomatoes ready to make sauce

 

Allow the pan of tomatoes to cool a bit until able to safely handle. You can then pour all the ingredients into a pot and use an immersion blender to blend everything into a sauce. Or if you don’t have an immersion blender, place the roasted ingredients into a high capacity upright blender to make your sauce. I use my Vitamix because it makes quick work of the blending process, chopping all the tomato seeds, onions, and garlic into a thick sauce.

 

roasted tomato sauce

 

Use the roasted tomato sauce immediately or save for later:

If you are planning on using your sauce immediately, adjust seasonings to taste and if it’s too thick, add a bit of water or your favorite red wine. At this point, you can also add in other spices like oregano, allspice and more basil. Cook the sauce on the stovetop for 20 minutes to incorporate your additions, then pour over your favorite cooked pasta.  For pizza sauce, do not add any other liquid.

You can also pour the sauce into prepared canning jars and can according to your favorite method. Or if you don’t like to can, like me, allow the sauce jars to come to room temperature and then freeze. Just remember to leave enough headroom in the jar, so the jars won’t crack in the freezer. The roasted tomato sauce freezes very well, in fact, I still have jars of frozen sauce from last year’s harvest.

“Canned Tomatoes” oil painting:

Last year, as an homage to my tomato harvest I painted this painting of canned whole tomatoes. The painting hangs in my kitchen.

The “Canned Tomatoes” oil painting was inspired by the hot jars sitting on the counter after I had used a water bath canning method, which I no longer use. I don’t care for the added acidity that citric acid creates when canning. So now I just freeze my jars and all is good!

A few blog posts ago I shared a recipe for tomato salsa. Did you make salsa? If you did, let me know how it turned out in the comments below.

I’m looking forward to Fall and doing some Plein air paintings of the beautiful trees in all their glory. In the meantime, I’ve been working on some previous paintings and trying to wrap things up so I can paint something new!

Until we meet again ~ Much Love

Rhonda

 


Enter to win an original oil painting! Click HERE.