I know what you are probably thinking right now . . . what on earth does Boston Cream Pie have to do with an English Kitchen, and you would be right in thinking . . . not a heck of a lot!
Other than the fact that's it's MY English Kitchen, and that's what I baked yesterday for the missionaries when they came to tea! I do not always cook traditional food here in my kitchen, anymore than anyone else does. Sometimes I cook an Indian meal, or hmmm . . . a Chinese . . . sometimes I even cook Spaghetti Bolognaise!
Oh heck, that is an English Kitchen!!! Or at least it is today's English Kitchen . . . a happy melting pot of the traditional, mixed with all the new flavours brought to our verdant shores by it's wide and diverse immigrant population!
And I think you'll find that there are a heck of a lot of us North American's over here . . . so why shouldn't we embrace some of the goodies from our homelands from time to time???
Oh, and by the way . . . there was a Boston over here before there was one in America. Boston, UK, is situated near the south-east coast of Lincolnshire, where the River Witham becomes the Haven on its short journey to The Wash. The town is approximately 120 miles directly north of London and 32 miles south-east of Lincoln. (and now you know!)
Boston Cream pie is not a pie. It is a cake. A very delicious sponge cake, split in the middle and filled with a tasty vanilla custard cream, and then topped with a scrummy chocolate glaze . . . deeeeeee-licious! And we ate the whole thing. Traditional no. Moreish . . .yes!
*Boston Cream Pie*
Makes one 9 inch round cake
It's not a pie . . . it's a cake, filled with a delicious vanilla custard cream and topped with a scrummy chocolate glaze!
2.5 ounces of vegetable shortening (1/3 cup)
7 ounces caster sugar (1 cup)
1 large free range egg
6.5 ounces plain flour (1 1/2 cups) sifted
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
5 ounces milk (2/3 cup)
For the cream filling:
3.5 ounces granulated sugar (1/2 cup)
3 TBS flour
1/4 tsp salt
375 ml of milk (1 1/2 cups)
3 large free range egg yolks
1 TBS butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
For the glaze:
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 TBS vegetable shortening
4 ounces sifted icing sugar (1 cup)
2 TBS hot water
1/2 tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Butter a 9 inch cake tin and dust with flour, tapping out any excess. Set aside.
Cream together the shortening and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the egg. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the vanilla to the milk. Add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture alternately with the milk mixture. Turn the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes until the cake springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes before turning out of the pan onto a rack to cool completely.
To make the filling, combine the sugar, flour and salt in a saucepan. Whisk in the milk. Cook over medium low heat until the mixture bubbles and thickens, whisking constantly. Boil for one minute. Beat the egg yolks slightly. Gradually stir in about half of the boiled mixture, whisking constantly and then stir the mixture into the cooked mixture, whisking it in well. Continue to cook for several minutes longer, stirring until thick and creamy. Whisk in the butter and vanilla. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely before proceeding.
Cut the cake in half horizontally. Place the bottom half on a plate. Cover with the cooled creamy mixture. Place the other half of the cake on top.
To make the glaze, melt the chocolate and shortening in a small pan over very low heat. Remove from the heat and blend in the sugar and hot water. Stir until smooth and slightly thickened, without beating. Stir in the vanilla and immediately spread on top of the cake, spreading only to the edges. Chill in the fridge for several hours before serving. Cut into wedges to serve.