Hummingbird Cake is a real blast-from-the-past cake. Popular in the South in the 1970s, it came to national attention years later when Oprah Winfrey's personal chef brought it to her television audience. Like Carrot Cake, also popular in the 1970s, Hummingbird Cake has cream cheese frosting.
Most Hummingbird Cakes are far too sweet for my taste and have waaaaay too much frosting. I've cut back on both, so one slice (1/16th of the cake) is well within my daily sugar allowance. (See Sugar - Toxin or Treat? for more about that.)
I was too lazy to get out my piping bag and tips, so this cake is just stone plain. But that just goes along with the whole simplifying-my-life thing that I'm enjoying so much. And taking that even further, I froze half the cake, 2 slices in each of 4 glass freezer containers, for future treats.
Tell me, do you like to freeze cake and other desserts instead of having great quantities of the stuff sitting around screaming "Eat Me" every time you walk by?!
(Makes one 8-inch 2-layer cake, 16 servings)
The Cake2 dip-and-sweep cups (10 ounces/283 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/3 cups (9.33 ounces/265 grams) sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (6 fluid ounces/177 ml) organic canola oil
1/2 cup (4 fluid ounces/118 ml) milk
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 8-ounce can unsweetened crushed pineapple, not drained
1 cup finely chopped ripe bananas (2 6.5-ounce bananas)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
The Frosting6 tablespoons (3 ounces/85 grams) cream cheese, room temperature
6 tablespoons (3 ounces/85 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 pound (16 ounces/454 grams) powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
About 2 tablespoons milk
1 Preheat oven to 350F/180C/Gas4. Grease well and lightly flour two 8-inch/20 cm layer pans.
2 In large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, soda, cinnamon and salt. Add oil, milk and eggs, stirring with a spoon just until dry ingredients are moistened. Stir in pineapple (including juice), bananas, vanilla extract and pecans.
3 Pour into prepared pans. Bake for about 30 to 35 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
4 Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on racks until completely cool, another 1 1/2 hours.
5 Make Cream Cheese Frosting. In bowl of stand mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, gradually beat in the powdered sugar. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the vanilla extract and milk; beat on high speed until frosting is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. You will likely have to add the liquid ingredients before adding all the powdered sugar.
6 Freeze however many slices you don't need right away. Each of these Pyrex Simply Store 3 Cup Rectangle glass dishes with lids holds 2 slices of cake.