This hummingbird cake is one of the first things I've made and went out of my way to style. I definitely think the photo's reflect that.
Now to the cake! I had a wonderful assistant in making this cake. My friend, RC, who blogs over at Bonbons & Biscotti, came over and spent the day with me. We talked, drank wine, and made this glorious and very simple bundt cake. It was so much fun and something I hope we'll do again soon. RC, makes some delicious family recipes on her blog with a focus on baking. I highly recommend you check her out!
The Hummingbird cake is a southern cake with the first known recipe published in Southern Living. Being from the south I was shocked and appalled that I had not only never made this cake before but had also never tasted it! It wasn't until I read Sarah Addison Allen's book The Girl Who Chased the Moon that I even ran across the mention of this kind of cake. In the book, which is one of my favorites, Julia Winterson is a bakery owner who makes magical cakes! It's a great read, all of Allen's books are.
The cake is normally several layers with a cream cheese frosting in between each layer but I found this version on the Bake or Break blog. I love bundt cakes. They're just so simple to make and you don't have to worry about fussing over layers.
For me, the cake itself was very banana bread-like but much lighter and not as sweet as I was expecting. I believe that is because there just isn't as much icing on this version. Little chucks of pineapple are like finding the prize at the bottom of the cracker jack box! The frosting is sweet but compliments the cake and doesn't over power it. Pecan's in this cake are key and give you a really great crunch factor!
Overall I loved this cake. I normally prefer chocolate of some form in my cakes but this is a great summer-time snack or dessert. It would be excellent for a dinner party or cook-out. I also think it makes a great breakfast or coffee cake!
Hummingbird Bundt Cake
Source: Bake or Break
1 & 1/2 cups chopped pecans, toasted (divided)
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 & 3/4 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 4 large bananas)
8 ounces crushed pineapple (undrained)
3/4 cup canola oil
1 & 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 tablespoons milk
Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 14-cup Bundt pan. Sprinkle 1 cup toasted pecans evenly in bottom of pan.
Stir together flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Stir in eggs, bananas, pineapple, oil, and vanilla. Stir just until dry ingredients are moistened. Spoon batter evenly in prepared pan.
Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes. Then, transfer cake to wire rack to cool completely.
Beat cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon milk until well-blended. Continue mixing and add about a teaspoonful of milk at a time until mixture is smooth and pourable.
Pour glaze over cooled cake. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup pecans over top of glaze.