Boston Cream Pie in a Jar

This post is a little more serious than many of my other posts.
Everyone’s heard about the bombs during the Boston marathon which is such a tragedy. I heard about it through a customer coming into the restaurant, then watched in horror the footage and photos from the horrible scene on TV.

I’ve never lost anyone close to me, or been through anything like that, but I can’t imagine what it’s like.
 To all those people who got injured and their families, all I can say is how strong you all are, and for the times you are not, let us know. You’re not alone, you’ve got the whole country standing by your side ready to jump in and help every single one of you.
I can’t imagine the sick mind behind this kind of move, how messed up someone has to be.
But in a time of darkness and pain, the help and support for all the victims and their families is truly inspiring. Many of the runners who were not injured were quick to jump in and give blood to those that needed it. Many of the restaurants in Boston are now hosting places for people to come and eat for free and a place to hangout for those who don’t have anyone else to be with.
Just like with a natural disaster, the love and support i’ve seen is amazing.
And while I may not be able to go there and help out, there’s not a whole lot I can do from here but send money and prayers their way, I wanted to make something to let people there know that even as far away as Texas, we are all thinking of you.
So keeping everyone in Boston in mind, get better soon. We’ve got your back.

Boston Cream Pie in a Jar

(Recipe adapted from What’s Cooking America)
2 cups sifted cake flour* (I used all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
3 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9-inch round pan. I used 2, but you could easily just use one pan and adjust times.
In a medium-size bowl, sift cake flour again with baking powder and salt; set aside.
In a bowl of your electric mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, and vanilla extract until the mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the sifted flour mixture to the butter mixture in three (3) batches alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
Pour mixture into prepared cake pans and bake for 20-25 minutes.
Pastry Cream
(Recipe adapted from Joy of Baking)
1 1/4 cups milk (I used 2%)
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large egg yolks
1/4 white sugar
2 tbls all purpose flour
2 tbls cornstarch
1 tsp whiskey (optional)
In a medium-sized heatproof bowl, mix the sugar and egg yolks together. (Do let the mixture sit too long or you will get pieces of egg forming.) Sift the flour and cornstarch together and then add to the egg mixture, mixing until you get a smooth paste.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan bring the milk and vanilla bean just to boiling (just until milk starts to foam up.) Remove from heat and add slowly to egg mixture, to temper, whisking constantly to prevent curdling. (If you get a few pieces of egg (curdling) in the mixture, pour through a strainer, then pour the egg mixture into a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until boiling, whisking constantly. When it boils, whisk mixture constantly for another 30 – 60 seconds until it becomes thick. Remove from heat and immediately whisk in the liqueur (if using). Pour into a clean bowl and immediately cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from forming. Cool to room temperature. If not using right away refrigerate until needed, up to 3 days. Whisk or stir before using to get rid of any lumps that may have formed.
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 tbls butter
splash of milk
Over a double boiler, melt the chocolate chips, butter and milk until smooth and free of lumps.
After the cake is baked and cool, cut out rounds with the jars you are using. Carefully place the cut out cake piece inside and push to the bottom, then add chocolate ganache, then pastry cream, then top with another piece of cake and more ganache.
Serve with whip cream and a cherry if desired!

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