Sunday, September 14, 2008


Another cool and overcast day here in Eastern Canada with rain predicted for this afternoon. The leaves on some of the trees have started to turn. Hard to believe that it was less than two weeks ago that we were swimming in the ocean. Seems like a lifetime of things have happened since then. Here are a couple of pics from the beach:

I figured it was time for me to post a couple of recipes. The mango-peach chutney, which I made the evening of the day we went to the beach, goes with just about anything. Serve it on crackers or on sliced baguette as an appetizer or add a dollop beside any type of fish or seafood. It would also be yummy with a roast chicken or ham and it's equally good in a sandwich. Here's the recipe (from "Moosewood Restaurant Low-fat Favorites," especially for Fernando in Mexico City:

Mango-Peach Chutney


1 large mango, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 cups fresh peaches, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened apple juice
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 medium onion, chopped
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger root
1 small fresh green chile, seeded and minced
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine all of the chutney ingredients in a nonreactive saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently, uncovered, for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thick and translucent. Cool or chill before serving. The chutney will keep for several weeks stored in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator.

Here's a pic of the finished product:

And now for the Boston Cream Pie that I served the other night for Brad's family. It's an old standby and one of the classics from the American dessert repertoire. My recipe comes from the April 1993 issue of Gourmet Magazine:

Boston Cream Pie

For the cake:

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
2 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk

For the custard:

3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup milk
3 large eggs
1/2 cup whipping cream (heavy cream)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
3 tablespoons unsalted butter

For the glaze:

6 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate, broken into pieces
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt

Make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 F and butter and flour a 9 1/2 inch springform pan. (I use a 9" pan and that works fine, too.) In a bowl with an electric mixer, cream together the butter, the sugar, and the vanilla until the mixture is light and fluffy, then beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and the salt and beat the mixture into the butter mixture in batches, alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared springform pan and bake the cake in the middle of the oven for 55 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. (Generally, in my oven, it takes about an hour.) Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack.

Make the custard: In a saucepan, whisk together the cornstarch, the sugar, and the milk. Add the eggs, the cream, and the salt, and whisk the mixture until it is smooth. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean and add them to the cream mixture. Bring the custard to a boil over moderate heat, whisking constantly. Boil the custard, whisking, for 2 minutes, remove the pan from the heat, and whisk in the butter. Let the custard cool completely, whisking occasionally.

Make the glaze: In a metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, melt the chocolate with the water, the butter, the corn syrup, and the salt, stirring until the glaze is smooth. (I use a double boiler, aka a bain de Marie. This time, as I mentioned before, I also used two squares of Baker's bittersweet chocolate and a 100 g Green and Black's Maya Gold chocolate bar - this totalled about 5.5 ounces of chocolate in, which was plenty. The Maya Gold has a hint of orange and spice in it and worked perfectly for the glaze. Brad's sister asked if I had put Cointreau in the glaze, but it was just the flavour from the bar shining through. It was very, very yummy!)

Remove the cake from the pan, halve it horizontally with a long serrated knife, and arrange the bottoom half, cut side up, on a plate. Top the bottom half with the custard, spreading the custard to the edge, and put the remaining cake half, cut side down, on top of the custard. Pour the glaze on top, spreading the glaze to the edge and letting it drip down the side.

Here's how mine looked (and please forgive the mess on the counter!)

1 comment:

Mark in DE said...

The beach pictures are BEAUTIFUL, and the Boston Cream Pie (my all-time favorite) is making my mouth water.

Mark :-)