Hummingbird Cake – banana, pineapple spice cake with a pineapple curd, cream cheese buttercream and toasted, candied pecans.
I’ve had a lot of cake in my life. Like, A LOT! But, believe it or not, I’ve never had Hummingbird Cake. Have you? To be totally honest, I didn’t even know about it until a few years ago. Ever since it’s been on my list to make. Last week, I finally got around to working on my own recipe and all I’ve got to say is, how on earth did I not make this cake sooner!
Hummingbird Cake is a traditional southern dessert. It’s known for being an oil-based cake, rather than a butter-based cake. This cake is also known for having more fruit (tons of bananas and crushed pineapple) in it than flour, which makes it incredibly moist. In a traditional Hummingbird Cake, you’ll also find lots of spices, pecans and cream cheese frosting.
For my version of a Hummingbird Cake, I wanted to stay fairly true to the roots of this dessert for those who know and love this cake already. You’ll see I use mashed bananas, crushed pineapple and lots of spices, similar to other Hummingbird Cake recipes.
However, by now you know I don’t love nuts in my cake layers. So instead of throwing pecans into my cake batter, I toasted and candied them and added the pecans to the exterior of the cake. I love the sweet and salty crunch this adds to each bite.
The other element I added to the cake is the pineapple curd.
Oh my goodness!
I’m not even sure what I’ve been doing with my life up until now without knowing the incredible goodness of pineapple curd. I took one bite and knew it was exactly what my cake needed, as well as my toast, my pancakes, my crepes, and everything else I put in my mouth. Not to mention it will for sure be added to coconut cake layers this summer for a pina colada cake!
For the pineapple curd, I made my own pineapple juice. Since we’re going into the summer months when pineapple is at it’s peak, you’ll get the best pineapple flavor from a fresh pineapple. However, using fresh pineapple is not necessary. You can also use canned pineapple juice. Try to find juice that doesn’t have sugar added to it. We’ll be doing that on our own when we make the curd.
To make your own pineapple juice:
- Dice an entire pineapple
- Place the pineapple in a medium saucepan and turn the heat to medium
- The pineapple will start to cook and juices will start to release
- Cook for about 5 minutes so the pineapple softens.
- Puree the pineapple in a blender or food processor
- Strain the juice from the meat of the pineapple
- Measure one cup of juice for the curd
The pineapple curd is best made a day ahead of time. In fact, I even like this whole cake better on the second day when the flavor has settled a bit. To store the cake, if you make it ahead of time, just make sure you cover it well and store it in the fridge overnight.
Cake Video: Making the Layers
Cake Video: Assembly
Love cream cheese frosting, here’s a few more delicious cakes calling your name!