Happy Father’s Day: Boston Cream Cake-Pie-Monster-Thing

Whenever I ask my dad what he wants me to make for dessert that weekend, I always get the same answer.  Without fail.

“Flour.  Sugar.  Frosting.  Can I put it on cereal?”

I used to find this a lot more annoying.  I get that it’s his way of enjoying whatever I’ve baked, or something, but there was a while when I would so indignantly declare that he was ruining the dessert that I’d worked so hard to make delicious and pretty and why was I even wasting my time, because he was just going to dissect my beautiful creation with a spoon and stuff it with ice cream?

He answered with his infamous (at least in my house) theory that the uglier food is, the better it tastes, and that he didn’t give a rat’s ass about how pretty my food was.  We’ve since agreed to disagree on the issue.

Our second-biggest dessert disagreement is muffins v. cupcakes: I have explained the difference probably thirty times, and he still seems to decide arbitrarily whether something is a muffin or a cupcake.  Frosting?  Definitely a cupcake.  Chocolate?  Probably a muffin.

Or in most cases in my house, an unfrosted cupcake.  But again, agree to disagree.  And not be able to explain, apparently.

His latest “food whut” has been a bit of a griper, though: what constitutes “frosting”.  He gets the difference between whipped cream and frosting just fine, but all other filling categories (with the exception of pudding, which he is totally on board with) fall into the vague “frosting” category.  I told him I was going to make a tart with a pastry cream; that was frosting.  And when I pitched the Boston cream monstrosity that I made him for Father’s Day, going over each layer with him, his response to the cream filling was something along the lines of “that’s frosting, right?”

When I told him it wasn’t, he asked if we could replace it with frosting.

When I said no and told him we could replace it with something like a cannoli filling instead, he nodded and said “Frosting.  Good.”

I give up.

Happy Fathers’ Day, weirdo.  Glad you like your cake, whatever it is you want to call the filling.

Boston Cream Cake-Pie

Pybrids for victory!

Boston Cream Cake-Pie
adapted from this recipe, reprinted on Huffington Post from Vegan Pie In The Sky


for the cake:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

for the crust:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 cups graham crackers, crumbled fine
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup sugar

for the filling:

  • 6 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup milk, divided
  • 1 teaspoon powdered, unflavored gelatin
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

for the ganache:

  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Cooking Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350° and generously spray a 9″ pie dish with cooking spray.
  2. Sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, combine the milk, vinegar, sugar, oil, and vanilla, whisking until smooth. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix until just moistened.
  3. Pour the batter into the pie dish and bake 13-14 minutes, or until a toothpick draws clean. (The top will be shiny, and the cake will strongly resemble a very large, very short flan.) Let cool for about five minutes, then invert onto a large dinner plate.
  4. Clean and dry your pie plate, then start on the graham cracker crust. Pour the graham crackers, sugar, and butter into the pie plate and mix by hand until combined; press into the shape of the pie plate and bake 10-12 minutes.
  5. In a blender or stand mixer, blend the ricotta, vanilla and almond extracts, and lemon juice until smooth. Set aside.
  6. Working in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine 1/2 cup milk and the gelatin. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer after 20-30 seconds and cook 5 minutes more. Stir in the sugar. Combine the remaining milk and cornstarch separately, then pour into the gelatin-milk mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened.
  7. Add the milk mixture to the ricotta and blend until smooth. Pour this mixture into the pie shell, tap to release air bubbles, and transfer to the refrigerator for 10 minutes to set.
  8. Once the filling feels slightly firm, gently place the cake layer on top and return to the fridge.
  9. In a small saucepan, prep your ganache: bring the cream to a rapid boil over medium-high heat, then remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate and butter. Pour the ganache out onto the center of the cake, tilting to spread the chocolate out to the edges.
  10. Let sit at least 3 hours in the fridge before serving.

Weekend Fail and March Wrap-Up

Happy 31st!  Another month gone.

I never really miss March.  It’s not my favorite month, and most of the time I just see it as something standing in the way of April– which just so happens to BE my favorite month!

April is superb.  The weather generally rocks, stuff starts to turn green, I get to eat cake…

Not too old, though.

April is pretty much the shit.  Other months don’t have nothin’ on April.

But before I get too carried away with myself about how awesome next month is going to be, I’m going to give a really quick round up on this one!  Starting with this weekend, and how it turned into the hugest failure of a weekend ever.

The post I planned for Saturday: how to make the best pie crust, ever.  Running on the success of last week’s fried chicken how-to, I wanted to teach y’all some more skills!  And it was all going really well.  The pie crust looked gorgeous before it went into the oven…

…but I’m not even going to show you the pictures, because a new “fail-safe trick” (I call bullshit) led to the most weirdly shrunken pie crust in the history of pie.   My mom had to save this weekend’s planned pie adventures with a second crust, which means now we have two pies.

We do not need two pies.  Anyone want a pie?  We have one to spare.  It might have a weird crust, though.

Following the massive pie failure, I decided to start rounding up my craft projects for the weekend– starting with the re-pocketing of a pair of cutoffs.

That ended even worse; do not even ask me how but I broke the sewing machine needle with my hand.  And we don’t have a spare, so I have three quarters of one pocket done and my shorts are currently more useless than they were before.

Failure. And pain.

Failure. And pain.  Nice colored pants, though.

So yeah, this weekend didn’t pan out so well.  I did manage to make a pastry cookie thing with the leftover pie crust and that tastes pretty much like a cinnamon roll, which rocks, but other than that..nope.

Now for the March Wrap Up part of today’s post, as promised!

Big one here is that Peaches and Praline was born.  I think that’s the star of the show in itself.  But if stats are more your speed, here’s some of those:

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The greens just want to assert their awesome presence, don't mind them.

Chicken Cacciatore – published March 12th





How's that for a slice of fried gold?

How to: Make the Best Fried Chicken Ever – published March 23rd





I spy with my little eye...yellow Oreos?  They're spring; my mom isn't keen on the mint, so I went half-and-half.

Mint Oreo Brownies with Thomas Keller – published March 9th





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The winner is cacciatore again, with 14.  The runners up:

arroz con pollo: served

Weeknight Dinners: Arroz con Pollo – published March 6th (12)





Easiest cake ever. Also the least pretty.

Party of One: Mug Cake – published March 24th (11)





2 for 5 at CVS!

Friday Five: March 15th – published March 14th (11)





Thanks for a great month– and I promise, next month will be even better!  Y’all have been wonderful with comments and support, and I’m excited to see how things have grown when the April wrap up rolls around.

Happy Easter– and don’t forget to say “rabbit rabbit” when you wake up!  (Old kid-superstitions die hard.)