Boston cream pie recipe & taunting photos

Eric recently turned Even Older Than He Had Been the Day Before, and–as is our tradition–I made him the birthday cake of his choice. And it was so good that Noah thinks it may be his birthday cake this year, too. (I personally think I’ll go obscenely simple and oldschool this year, with this “best birthday cake” recipe over at Smitten Kitchen, but who knows?).

This was only the second time I’ve made (or indeed eaten) Boston cream pie. This recipe is a keeper. I used the America’s Test Kitchen cake and custard recipes that this random but kindly person posted, with this older and more straightforward recipe for the ganache or icing or topping or whatever you want to call it. Nom nom for real.

Cake, pastry cream, and chocolate ganache. Eric seriously suggested making pastry cream instead of vanilla pudding in future, because “it’s like pudding but with half and half and butter instead of milk! it’s like enriched pudding!”

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Do you see the small hand inching toward any stray crumbs, bowls in need of licking, etc.? Noah was vigilant.
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Where goes custard, there too goes meringues. (I can’t just throw away six egg whites.) One jar of coconut, one of sesame. Did you know you can fold tahini or peanut butter into meringues? The tahini/vanilla ones taste like halva, people! But I digress.
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Also: Eric’s birthday is at the worst possible time of the year. It just bites. We’re always in some sort of fall-semester-related hell when it rolls around: the general fall-semester hell of this year, dissertation deadlines, doctoral exams, this theme extends way back. Plus I’ve been pregnant on two of his birthdays. So, I really think I deserve a gold star for birthday cake production here. Gold star!

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