It's funny when I think I have such a brilliant idea, just to find that it's all been done before...and by Martha Stewart, no less. So, if you've already seen or tasted miniature Boston Cream Pies, I apologize for showing up late to the party. For the rest of you, feel free to continue thinking that I am a creative genius. :)
I went to a prestigious private college-preparatory school in my teens. Students sat at round tables and were served family-style meals. Dessert was rarely a part of my Chinese home, much less Boston Cream Pie. But, at school, it made the menu rounds. While it was run-of-the-mill for many of my peers, Boston Cream Pie days were special, and worth every penny of that outrageous tuition I had a scholarship for. I guess what's more amusing than finding out that I'm not as brilliant as I think I am, is that after all these years, it's the Boston Cream Pie I remember most.
Mini Boston Cream Pies
Preheat oven to 350F. Bake 24 muffins in greased medium muffin pan cups as directed on package. Cool in pans 10 min. Remove to wire racks; cool completely.
Beat heavy whipping cream until soft peaks form. Set aside in another bowl. Beat milk and dry pudding mix with wire whisk 2 min. or until well blended. Let stand 5 min. Mix whipped cream into pudding. Meanwhile, use serrated knife to cut cupcakes horizontally in half. Spoon a heaping Tbsp. of the pudding mixture onto bottom half of each cupcake; cover with top of cupcake.
Place the chocolate into a medium bowl. Heat the cream in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil. When the cream has come to a boil, pour over the chocolate chips, and whisk until smooth. Stir in the rum if desired. Let cool slightly.
Spoon ganache over each cupcake. Refrigerate until ready to serve.