The Hummingbird Cake has been hugely popular in the South, toted to picnics and holiday parties and shared at supper clubs and family reunions. Most of the time the cake is baked in layers, slathered with a cream cheese frosting, then sprinkled with chopped pecans. But it was originally intended as a Bundt.
Back when the recipe originated it included mashed bananas, crushed pineapple, and cinnamon, and it was baked in a Bundt pan like this recipe. Because these ingredients are available any time of the year, it is the perfect cake to bake and slice for the holidays. It can be made ahead and the flavors improve after the cake rests for a couple of days. To glaze a Hummingbird Bundt cake, reserve a portion of the pineapple juice in the can and whisk together a speedy glaze with a little powdered sugar. Or just dust with powdered sugar for the simplest and most festive look of all.
Hummingbird Bundt Cake
Makes 12 to 16 servings
Prep: 20 to 25 minutes
Bake: 45 to 50 minutes
Vegetable shortening or butter and flour for prepping the pan
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, slightly beaten
8 ounces (1 cup) vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple packed in juice, drained
2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 4 medium)
2 teaspoons powdered sugar, sifted
1. Place a rack in the center of the oven, and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan. Shake out the excess flour, and set the pans aside.
2. Place the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine well. Add the eggs, oil, and vanilla, and blend with a wooden spoon or a mixer on low speed. Increase the speed to medium and blend until well combined, 1 minute. Or stir more briskly until well combined. Fold in the pineapple and the bananas. Turn the batter into the prepared pan, and place the pan in the oven.
3. Bake until the top of the cake springs back when lightly touched, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edges of the cake, and give the cake pan a gentle shake to loosen it. Invert the cake onto the rack to cool completely, at least 30 minutes.
4. Sprinkle with the sifted powdered sugar. Slice and serve.