Thursday, September 19, 2013

Hummingbird Cake

Somehow, this beautiful cake became lost in the mounds of pictures I have. If memory serves me correctly, I made this cake for Mother's Day, months ago! It's a shame I forgot about it, because it was truly a delicious cake. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Hummingbird cakes, they are filled with banana and pecan chunks, moistened with crushed pineapple, and tasting lightly of cinnamon spice. Topped with a whipped cream cheese frosting, and we're talking scrump-diddly-umptious. Yes that is a word.

I think that although this cake made a wonderful dessert for late spring/early summer, it would make an equally amazing dessert for the fall. Due to the density of the cake and the warm spices included, it could easily fit into the fall season. It reminded me of Apple Caramel Cake that I made last Thanksgiving for my birthday, which I had decided was my favourite cake to the date. Although I don't think this Hummingbird cake topped it, it's sidled right up behind it! I particularly like this version of cream cheese frosting, because with the whipped cream it makes it much lighter and not as sweet- sometimes with cream cheese frosting the sugar level starts to burn the back of my throat. Too much info? Oops... well, did I mention the whole thing is super easy and quick to make??

3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
8 oz. can crushed pineapple, liquid included
2 cups diced ripe bananas
2 cups pecans, chopped and toasted

16 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup heavy cream, cold

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease and flour 3 9-inch cake pans.

Prepare toasted pecans: chop pecans in small pieces and place on a parchment covered baking sheet. Bake for 5 minutes, watching them so that they do not burn. Set aside and let cool.

Whisk together flour, soda, salt, sugar and cinnamon in large bowl. Add lightly beaten eggs, oil and vanilla to the dry ingredients and stir until combined. Add crushed pineapple (liquid as well) and cut up bananas, and stir until combined. Finally stir in 1 cup of chopped toasted pecans. Reserve the rest of the pecans to sprinkle on top of the cake if desired.

Spread batter evenly among cake pans and bake for 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove and let cool on a cooling rack.

For the frosting: beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth and fluffy. In a separate bowl, beat the heavy cream to nearly stiff peaks, then add the whipped cream into the cheese mixture and quickly and briefly beat to combine. Do not over beat.

To assemble the cake: gently level the cake layers using a large serrated knife to remove any mounded tops. Place first layer cut side down and spread frosting on top with an offset spatula. Continue with the remaining two layers and then frost the sides. Sprinkle with remaining pecans, if desired. Store in fridge.

Source: cake from Bakerella, who adapted from Southern; frosting from Not So Humble Pie. Pin It

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