“DON’T BE DISMAYED AT GOOD-BYES. A FAREWELL IS NECESSARY BEFORE YOU CAN MEET AGAIN. AND MEETING AGAIN, AFTER MOMENTS OR LIFETIMES, IS CERTAIN FOR THOSE WHO ARE FRIENDS.” Richard Bach
HaPpY BiRtHdAy MiKe!!!
I have an amazing story to tell you. At least it’s amazing and special to me. I recently had the occasion to have cocktails with my high school sweetheart. What’s so amazing you ask? It’s just that we have not seen each other in nearly 35 years!!!
I truly believe that nothing in life is random. And that everything happens for a reason. And I am trying to understand why I am given this second chance at friendship. For me, I think I know. I struggle to understand how some can take friendship for granted; or worse, can let go so easily after investing much time and emotion. But second chances of this magnitude don’t come along every day. And so it is that I know, despite what time has passed, that this is a friendship I will treasure and nurture for all the days of my life. Mike recently suggested that I get back to our roots and make a Boston Creme Pie. So here’s to prom pictures and pansies and Boston Creme Cupcakes and many more birthday celebrations to come…..and to many, many more years of friendship!
6 TBSP unsalted butter, cut into pieces, (plus more at room temperature for tins)
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour, (plus more for tins)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c milk
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 c sugar
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush muffin tins with softened butter and dust with flour, shaking out excess. In a bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a sauce pan over low heat, combine milk and butter.
Using an electric mixer on high speed, whisk together the eggs and sugar until fluffy, pale yellow, and thick enough to hold a ribbon, about 5 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium, and then gradually add the flour mixture. Mix until it is incorporated.
Bring the milk and the butter just to a boil. With the mixer on low speed again, add the hot milk mixture to the batter in a slow, steady stream. Mix until smooth, but do not over mix. Beat in the vanilla.
Divide the batter among the muffin tins, filling each about halfway. Bake until cupcakes are golden, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 12-15 minutes. Transfer tins to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Run a small spatula or knife around the edges to loosen. Turn cupcakes out onto rack and cool completely. When ready to finish, use a serrated knife to cut the cupcakes in half horizontally. Spread a TBSP of pastry cream on the bottom half. Replace top halves. Spoon about a TBSP of glaze over the cupcakes. Refrigerate 30 minutes before serving.
4 large egg yolks
1/2 c sugar
1/4 c potato starch (or cornstarch)
pinch of salt
2 c milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
In a large bowl, whisk egg yolks until smooth. Combine sugar, potato starch, and salt in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium. While stirring constantly, gradually add milk in a slow, steady stream. Cook until mixture thickens and begins to bubble, about 5 minutes.
Whisking constantly, slowly pour a cup of the milk mixture into the egg yolks to temper. Pour mixture back into remaining milk mixture in the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture comes to a full boil and is thick enough to hold its shape when lifted with a spoon, about 2-4 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla.
Strain mixture through a fine sieve into a glass bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled and firm, at least 2 hours. (The longer the better, up to 2 days.)
CHOCOLATE GANACHE GLAZE:
6 oz semi sweet chocolate, finely chopped
2/3 c heavy cream
1 TBSP light corn syrup
Place the chocolate in a medium heat proof bowl. In a small saucepan over medium high heat, bring the cream and corn syrup just to a simmer. Pour cream over chocolate and let stand, without stirring, until chocolate begins to melt. Then, using a flexible spatula, gently stir the chocolate and cream until totally combined. If any chocolate pieces remain, strain through a sieve. The recipe calls for the glaze to be used immediately. But next time I would let it sit for 5-10 minutes to thicken before spooning over cupcakes. The glaze can be refrigerated for up to 5 days. Reheat gently before using.