I have been intrigued with Boston cream pies for the longest time. I’ve always been intrigued by American culture and food and this cake has always been on my must-make list. I always found it strange that it was called a pie but in fact cake. However, this doesn’t even matter because this is the official dessert of Massachusetts. How fabulous do you have to be as a dessert to be an official dessert of a state? Pretty fabulous, I’d think. And fabulous it is.
I wanted to add a bit of a twist to the traditional recipe and added a touch of coconut to every component. I am having a bit of a coconut moment at the moment and I’m adding it to pretty much everything. Sometimes it’s not the wisest decision, but with this cake, it was genius. The coconut almost intensifies the chocolate and vanilla flavours and I love that it reminds me just a little of a lamington which is one of my all-time favourite baked goods.
This is a fabulous cake for tea time and even though it appears so simple, will definitely impress anyone you feed it to.
- 250 g caster sugar
- 200 g unsalted butter room temperature
- 4 eggs
- 225 g cake flour
- 50 g unsweetened desiccated coconut
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 200 ml coconut milk
for the pastry cream filling
- 200 ml milk
- 300 ml coconut milk
- 1 vanilla pod seeds scraped out
- 30 g 2 tablespoons corn flour
- 2 egg yolks
- 50 g sugar
for the coconut ganache
- 50 ml coconut milk
- 400 g dark chocolate roughly chopped
- To make the cake, pre-heat the oven to 180°c and grease and line two 20cm cake pans.
- In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt and add the coconut.
- Add the flour mixture and the coconut milk to the butter and sugar mixture alternatively. Scrape the bowl every now and then to ensure even distribution of all the ingredients.
- Divide the batter between the cake pans and place in the oven.
- Allow to bake for 30-35 minutes until the cakes are golden brown and risen and a skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Remove the cakes from the oven then allow to cool completely.
- To make the pastry cream, heat the coconut milk, milk and vanilla in a small saucepan until it reaches boiling point (don't allow to boil).
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, cornflour and sugar. Whisk in a little of the hot milk mixture to temper the eggs.
- Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and allow to cook over gentle heat until the pastry cream is thick and glossy and there is no floury taste.
- Remove from the saucepan, place in a bowl and cover with cling film. It's important for the cling to be right on the surface of the pastry cream so to prevent it from forming a skin. Place the pastry cream in the fridge for 2-3 hours until completely chilled.
- To make the ganache, melt together the coconut milk and chocolate over a double boiler until smooth and glossy.
- To assemble, place the pastry cream on one of the cakes then sandwich the remaining layer of cake. Pour over the ganache and allow to cool slightly then serve.