Mini Boston Cream Pie

I made these before and they didn’t make it to work.  Which sort of means that we ate a dozen in my house.  In one weekend.  Whoops.

Besides just being absolutely adorable… because who doesn’t love a mini anything, especially one filled with pastry cream and topped with ganache?!  They’re also quite tasty as well.  The ganache is nice and thick with a rich chocolate flavor, the yellow cake is reminiscent of yellow boxed cake batter that you were allowed to eat by the spoonful when you were little and the pasty cream, well, you’ve seen the pastry cream before in the marble cupcakes.  I heart it.  I want to fill all my cupcakes with pastry cream.

This time around I made these for a going away party for a very sweet friend at work.  She’s taking a few months off to travel the world and do volunteer work, I’m so proud of her and super excited to hear all about her wonderful adventure!

The great thing about these “cupcakes” is that they’re so easy to make but they look like a million bucks (at least in my opinion)… the pastry cream can be made a few days ahead of time, the cake is super easy to whip up and the ganache takes about 5 minutes to make.  I’m sure if you make them you won’t be sorry.

Mini Boston Cream Pie (Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes Book)

  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.  In a medium sized bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until combined.
  2. In a small saucepan combine milk and butter; set over very low heat.
  3. In a standing bowl mixer, with the whisk attachment, combine eggs and sugar until fluffy, pale yellow and, thick enough to hold a ribbon on the surface for several seconds when the whisk is lifted, about 5 minutes.  Reduce speed to medium and gradually add the flour mixture, whisking just until incorporated.
  4. Bring milk and butter mixture just to a boil.  With mixture on low speed, add milk to batter in a slow steady stream; mix until smooth.  Do not overmix.  Beat in vanilla.
  5. Butter and flour (or spray with non-stick baking spray) a muffin pan and divide batter evenly, filling each halfway.  Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until cupcakes are golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean, about 15 minutes.
  6. After baking, transfer tin to a wire rack to cool about 10 minutes.  Run a small offset spatula or knife around the edges to loosen; turn cupcakes onto cooling rack and let cool completely.

*Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature or frozen for up to 2 months, in a airtight containers.

Yield: 1 dozen (12 cupcakes)

Pastry Cream

  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  1. Whisk egg yolks until smooth in a large bowl.  Combine sugar, corn starch, and salt in a medium saucepan and heat over medium.  Stirring constantly, gradually add milk in a slow, steady stream and cook until mixture begins to thicken and bubble, about 5 mins.
  2. Whisking constantly, slowly pour 1/3 of milk mixture into the eggs yolks.  Temper the egg yolks so they do not curdle.  Pour mixture into remaining milk mixture in the saucepan.  Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture comes to a full boil and is thick enough to hold shape when lifted with a spoon, 2-4 minutes.  Remove from heat, stir in vanilla.
  3. Strain mixture through a fine sieve into a heatproof bowl.  Cover with parchment paper or plastic wrap, pressing it directly on surface to prevent a skin from forming.   Refrigerate until chilled and firm, at least 2 hours (or up to 2 days).

Chocolate Ganache

  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  1. Place chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl.  Bring cream and corn syrup just to a simmer and  a small saucepan over medium-high heat pour mixture over chocolate  Let stand, without stirring, until chocolate begins to melt.
  2. Using a flexible spatula, gently stir the chocolate and cream until totally combined.  Begin near the center of the bowl and gradually work your way toward the edge, pulling in as much chocolate as possible until the mixture is smooth and glossy.
  3. If any chocolate pieces remain, strain the mixture through a fine sieve and discard solids.

*If not using immediately, glaze can be refrigerated up to 5 days in an airtight container.  Reheat gently before using.

Mini Boston Cream Pie Assembly

  • Using a serrated knife, split cupcakes in half horizontally.
  • Spread 1 tablespoon of pastry cream on the bottom half of each cupcake and replace the top half.
  • Spoon about 1 tablespoon of ganache over each cupcake.
  • Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.

That’s all folks 😉 I hope you like!  I tossed them in a cupcake liner for serving, just to make them a little easier for everyone to grab.  If you have any questions, please let me know!

-Jenn

6 thoughts on “Mini Boston Cream Pie

  1. These look amazing!

    Have you ever had the “Icebox Eclair Dessert”? It’s a favorite in American cookbooks from community churches’ women’s groups. All the church members get together and provide their favorite recipes, and this one is a classic.

    It’s just layers of graham crackers with layers of vanilla pudding–that pastry cream would be delicious, then more graham crackers on top. Layer in an oblong cake or lasagne pan–in the US it would be a 13×9 inch pan that is 2-3 inches tall. You want to have a layer of crackers on the very top. Then you cover everything with a ganache. Chill in refrigerator for at least 6 hours, overnight would be better.

    The graham crackers soak up some of the liquid and taste a lot like an eclair. It’s popular for dessert when it’s too hot to cook and is also budget friendly. I know a lot of people use boxed Jello pudding mix, but I make my own pastry creme or at least Byrd’s Custard. I’ve also done this on a smaller scale for those times where I want something sweet but am only making something for me.

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