The Hummingbird Cake is one of the traditional southern cakes that most everyone loves, but it doesn't get baked quite as much as some of the others. I am not completely sure why, except that recipes for it are not published as often and it's a little trickier to have success with. However, don't let that stop you from trying it. If you follow the directions in this recipe, you should have success. The tricky part of the this cake, is that it is so moist, with the banana and the pineapple, it can fall apart. It is traditionally a stacked, layer cake and preferably a three layer cake, although it can be made in two layers.
The first known published recipe for the Hummingbird Cake was in 1978 in Southern Living Magazine and the cake won the Favorite Cake Award in 1978 at the Kentucky State Fair. This is not that recipe, but a variation of it. This is what you will need for your Hummingbird Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting:
3 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 cup oil (vegetable or canola)
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. vanilla
8 oz. crushed pineapple (drained)
2 cups very ripe bananas, mashed
2 cups chopped pecans, divided (can use walnuts)
Cream Cheese Frosting
2 (8 oz.) blocks of cream cheese (softened)
1 stick of butter, softened (1/2 cup)
2 lbs. confectioners sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the oil, sugar, and eggs. Gradually stir in flour. Add cinnamon and vanilla.
Fold in the pineapple, mashed bananas and 1 cup of the pecans. After it's well incorporated pour into three round 9 inch prepared cake pans.
To prepare the pans, and this is a key to this cake turning out well, cut three circles of either wax or parchment paper and place them in each cake pan. It is very important to not skip this step. This cake is so moist, it tend to break apart when you take it out of the pans. The paper holds the layers together. Spray the pans and the paper well with nonstick baking spray that contains flour, like Baker's Joy, or grease and flour the pans.
Place the pans in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before turning them out.
Prepare the cream cheese frosting while the cakes cool. To make the cream cheese frosting, cream the cream cheese and the butter together with an electric mixer, until fluffy. Slowly add in the sugar until well incorporated. Add the vanilla.
Stack and frost your cake layers. To finish, sprinkle the top with the other cup of chopped nuts. Store this cake in the refrigerator if not serving immediately.