Thursday, February 10, 2011

Boston Cream Cupcakes!

But first…did I mention how much I am loving this meatloaf??  Seriously.  I had it for lunch Tuesday and yesterday and now I am truly sad it’s all gone.  Must.Make.More.


Leftovers for lunch: IMG_7716

Now on to the sweet stuff!


For Superbowl Sunday I decided to contribute a dessert to my friends party!  I didn’t know what to make, but I was thinking cupcakes…but what kind??

Then I had a random craving for Boston Cream Pie.  I hardly EVER have BCP, but once in a great while it just sounds so good.

I scoured the interwebs for some recipe ideas. 

I ended up at the Sugar Plum blog and My Sweet Life

For the cake, I used the recipe from Sugar Plum.  I even had meringue powder on hand from back when I made cookie favors for my friend’s bridal shower!


I HIGHLY recommend getting that dried buttermilk you see above.  It just stays in your fridge and you always have buttermilk on hand when you need it…even if you just need a little!



I really loved this cake.  It reminded me of that quintessential “cake batter” cake!  Vanilla-y and delicious!!  It was a very moist cake too, and more of a sponge cake consistency.    

Cake (source)
(my quantities are approx. 1.5 times the original)

1 7/8 cups all purpose flour (so basically a little under 2 cups)
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/4 teaspoons meringue powder (optional, but recommended)
1/4 + pinch teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup (scant)granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1.5 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup sour cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat 1 12-cup muffin pan and 1 24-cup mini muffin pan with cooking spray or line with paper liners.

In a  mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, meringue powder and salt. In another bowl (or the bowl of your stand mixer),  on medium speed, beat together butter and sugar until creamy - about 2-3 minutes. Beat in eggs and vanilla until well combined - about 2 minutes. Beat in buttermilk and sour cream until combined -about 1 minute. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually beat in flour mixture until just combined. Divide batter into muffin cups;

Bake regular size cupcakes for 13-15 minutes or until cupcakes are well risen and cake springs back when touched.  Minis take 8-9 minutes.

Cool on wire racks.

Of course I made regulars and mini’s!  My adjustments to the quantities  yielded 1 dozen regular cupcakes, and a full pan (24) minis!  Perfect amount!


For the pastry cream I went to the recipe from My Sweet Life.  I liked that it used whole eggs (not just yolks) and the process was streamlined as everything went into the pot at once.

I also only had skim milk, but did have heavy cream so I made adjustments for that.

Pastry Cream (source)

1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon  salt
2 eggs 
1 cup skim milk
1/4 cup heavy cream 
1 teaspoon  pure vanilla extract

Stir sugar with flour and salt.  Lightly whisk eggs in a large saucepan then stir in sugar mixture until thoroughly combined.  Slowly stir in milk, making sure all ingredients are incorporated.  Place over medium heat.  Stirring constantly, bring just to a boil.  Remove from heat; stir in vanilla.  Place a piece of plastic wrap or buttered waxed paper directly on surface of cream. Cool to lukewarm


I was a tad skeptical as I’m used to the method of the recipe from Sugar Plum, but I treated this like pudding and just STIRRED STIRRED STIRRED over med/med-high heat until it thickened!

It WILL thicken, don’t worry, just keep stirring…you’re arm may get tired but the last thing you want is burnt milk on the bottom of your pan.  It will take 5-10 min, and I never really let mine “boil” but it was close, and probably would have if I stopped stirring…but don’t do that :)

Until you see this…



Now let that cool.

Then cut your cupcakes!  I used the method of cutting out a small cone shape piece from the top of each cupcake with a paring knife.  



Then once my pastry cream was at room temp, I placed it into a disposable pastry bag (or plastic bag), snipped the tip and filled them up!


IMG_7670    IMG_7669

I later went back and patted down those little “peaks” on the cream with a wet fingertip. 

Now for the chocolate.  I used the microwave method from Sugar Plum but added a 1/4 tsp of vanilla after it was melted.  

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3 tablespoons heavy cream

In a microwave safe bowl (I used glass), combine chocolate chips and cream. Melt mixture in the microwave for 1 minute, stirring every 20 seconds, until melted and smooth.  Stir in vanilla.

The ganache was delicious, I mean how is melted chocolate chips ever NOT delicious?? BUT I do think it was a bit too intense for these cupcakes.  I didn’t even use much, but could of used just a thin thin layer. 

I think next time I’d look for a different chocolate glaze for these, as opposed to the ganache-type icing that these had. 

They were still fabulous though…and so shiny :)

IMG_7687 IMG_7678  Delicious.  And the leftovers kept very well in the fridge for days. 


IMG_7691 IMG_7689

Wish I had one right now :)


  1. What a FABULOUS idea! And the cream is such a great surprise. Yum yum. And they're pretty too!

  2. what a grea idea!! i want some too!!

  3. Those look incredible! When I first saw them I was thinking, a chocolate glaze might be better... just a nice, thin layer. But I'm never one to turn down chocolate of any amount!

    Your comment about stirring and stirring the pastry cream reminded me of Flour. I would make batches of pastry cream probably 10 times that size, and my arm would just want to die!

  4. That ganache on top looks gorgeous. Yum.

  5. I love the mini ones. What a great idea to make different sizes!

  6. I love that you made regular sized & tiny cupcakes - so cute! The tip about the dried buttermilk is a good one... I often find myself with a ton of leftovers after using it for baking. I typically make a big batch of pancakes with the leftover buttermilk, but I like the idea of having the powdered form on hand. Why don't they package buttermilk in smaller containers??

  7. I LOVE miniature desserts-- they always look extra delectable and delicious, I don't know why...

  8. Oh my gosh that looks so good. I want one now too!

  9. I've been craving cupcakes like it's my job lately. These look awesome!
    I made Boston cream pie for my father in law last year and it was delicious. Here is the recipe - maybe you can convert it into cupcakes next time. Both the cream and the glaze were perfect!

  10. Wow, those look absolutely amazing! I've tried making pastry cream before and failed... I am going to try again later today- hope I'll be able to do it!!! I love the Sugar Plum blog mainly because I call people sugas all the time heheh. Seriously though- I bet everyone LOVED these cupcakes! YUM!

  11. these look awesome! i'd love a little one right now... or maybe a few hours to put me after noon ;)

  12. These look fantastic- I made mini Boston cream pies in December and they were pretty similar, but I sliced the cakes and put the custard in the middle. Great minds think alike!