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The Boston Cream Pie is a timeless, culinary creation dating back to 1856. The dessert was first created and served at the grand opening of Boston’s Parker House, now widely known as Omni Parker House. Today, it’s distinguished as Massachusetts’ official state dessert over Toll House Cookies and the Fig Newton.

Despite the name, it’s not a pie at all. Filled with a rich and velvety pastry cream, what truly makes this two-layer golden cake so special is the rich chocolate icing. Back in the 1800s, chocolate was mainly consumed at home as a beverage or in puddings. With this inventive use of chocolate, the dessert was originally named “Chocolate Cream Pie.” Over time, the name changed, and in 1958, the Boston Cream Pie became so popular it was fashioned into a Betty Crocker boxed mix.

It’s so wicked awesome (that’s Boston lingo for REAL GOOD), we’re sharing our original recipe so you can enjoy at home. But if baking isn’t your thing, you can always have it delivered via Goldbelly.

Individual Boston Cream Pie

Boston Cream Pie Recipe

Ingredients:

Sponge Cake

  • 7 Eggs, separated
  • 8oz. Sugar
  • 1 Cup Flour
  • 1 oz. Melted butter

Pastry Cream

  • 1 tbsp. Butter
  • 2 cups Milk
  • 2 cups Light Cream
  • ½ cup Sugar
  • 3 ½ tbsp. Cornstarch
  • 6 Eggs
  • 1 tsp. Dark rum

Icing

  • 5 oz. Fondant for white icing
  • 6 oz. Fondant for chocolate icing
  • 3 oz. Semi-sweet chocolate, melted

Substitution for Fondant Icing

Chocolate Icing

  • 6 oz Semi-sweet chocolate, melted
  • 2 oz. Warm water

White Icing

  • 1 cup Sugar (Confectioner’s)
  • 1 tsp. Corn syrup
  • 1 tsp. Water

Directions

Step 1: Separate egg yolks and whites into two separate bowls. Add ½ of the sugar to each bowl. Beat both until peaked. When stiff, fold the whites into the yolk mixture. Gradually add flour, mixing with a wooden spatula. Mix in the butter. Pour this mixture into a 10-inch greased cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until spongy and golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool fully.

Step 2: Bring to a boil in a saucepan the butter, milk and light cream. While this mixture is cooking, combine the sugar, cornstarch and eggs in a bowl and whip until ribbons form. When the cream, milk, butter mixture reaches the boiling point, whisk in the egg mixture and cook to boiling. Boil for one minute. Pour into a bowl and cover the surface with plastic wrap. Chill overnight if possible. When chilled, whisk to smooth out and flavor with 1 tsp. dark rum.

Step 3: Level the sponge cake off at the top using a slicing knife. Cut the cake into two layers. Spread the flavored pastry cream over one layer. Top with the second cake layer. Reserve a small amount of the pastry cream to spread on sides to adhere to almonds.

Step 4: For chocolate fondant: Warm 6 oz. of white fondant over boiling water to approximately 105 degrees. Add melted chocolate. Thin to spreading consistency with water. For white fondant: Warm 5 oz. of white fondant over boiling water to approximately 105 degrees. Thin with water if necessary. Place in a piping bag with a 1/8-inch tip.
Alternate: Melt the chocolate. Combine with warm water. Combine ingredients and warm to approximately 105 degrees. Adjust the consistency with water. It should flow freely from the pastry bag.

Step 5: Spread a thin layer of chocolate fondant icing on the top of the cake. Follow immediately with spiral lines starting from the center of the cake, using the white fondant in the pastry bag. Score the white lines with the point of a paring knife, starting at the center and pulling outward to the edge. Spread sides of cake with a thin coating of the reserved pastry cream. Press on toasted almonds.

Best of luck to all of you in recreating this piece of culinary history. Of course, if you’d rather leave the creation and experience to Parker’s Restaurant, JFK and Jackie’s table awaits.

Jay Cooney

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