FIRST off, no hummingbirds were harmed in the making of this cake.
Secondly, I’ve made this cake for YEARS! Thank you Art Smith for the recipe. As all things get better with age, many of the components of this have changed. Though it doesn’t have our “Will Bake 4 Food” Branding, here’s an example of my making this with my sous chef from YEARS ago!
Here is the recipe that I used for this iteration:
3 Cups self-rising flour
2 Cups granulated sugar
1 t ground cinnamon
½ t salt
2 C chopped ripe bananas, (It was about 3 bananas for me)
1 C crushed pineapple, about 15 oz can drained
1 C vegetable oil
2 large eggs, beaten
1½ t pure vanilla extract
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
8 ounces butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
1 lb. confectioners' sugar (about 4½ cups sifted, after sifted/aerated, it yields a GREAT deal more)
1-2 t vanilla extract (depending on taste preference)
Position racks in your oven to middle and lower 3rd of the oven. Preheat oven to 350degF
Lightly butter/ dust with flour 2 9inch cake pans. I like to use the Baker’s Joy instead! If you would like to use parchment paper in the bottom of the pan, now’s the time! I’ve had no trouble with the cakes sticking, but maybe I’m just lucky?
In a large bowl, sift together all of the dry ingredients; also, whisk so that they are evenly distributed.
In a separate bowl, whisk or stir together your wet ingredients. You don’t want the bananas to be complete mush, so I would avoid using a mixer here.
There are TWO schools of thought here, in the video above, I absolutely follow the recipe to a T! In my experience, I’ve learned that incorporating a little of the dry into the wet at a time is the most successful method. SO, about 1/3 at a time, sprinkle the Dry ingredients over the wet ingredients and fold in with a spatula. . . I use a Spirtle!
Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared pans. I now use a scale to make sure that I’m within a ½ oz. between the pans. If you want to “eyeball” it, make sure that there is about the same amount in both pans or ONE will cook mega fast and the other will take like 3 days! LOL
Bake in the preheated oven 30-35 minutes (it takes 39 minutes in my ancient oven) on the center rack. I rotated my pans after 15 minutes because I have a hot spot in my oven. . . the tell of “Doneness” is when the center is set and springs back when you push on it. For me, about minute 35, there would still be finger prints visible when pushed. . . by 39 minutes, it bounced back! Once finished baking, pull the pans out and let cool for about 10-15 minutes before “de panning”.
“Depan” by loosening the cake from the sides with a butter knife, then placing a wire rack on top of the pan, invert the pan. The cake is now upside down! SO, with another wire rack, put the cake right side up to cool completely.
While your cakes are cooling, you can prep your icing! With a hand with beaters or stand mixer with whisk attachment cream together your cream cheese and butter until fluffy, then add in vanilla. Add in the confectioner’s sugar a little at a time while on low speed until there aren’t loose particles of sugar and then put it on high speed to mix a beautiful frosting.
This is the way we did it: if using the additional butter cream, once your buttercream (s) are done and your cakes are cooled, we get to put it together! Place one layer right side up on your serving platter; then use the additional lemon buttercream to cover this with an even layer. Then put the next layer upside down on top of the icing. This results with a flat top! NOW, with an offset spatula, spread the cream cheese buttercream over the top and sides as if making a “crumb” coat. Fill a piping bag with a star tip with the remaining cream cheese buttercream and decorate to your liking*!
Additional Icing for in between cakes:
½ C vegetable shortening
½ C (1 stick) of butter
1 t vanilla extract
2 t lemon extract*
4 C (1 lb.) of confectioner’s sugar, sifted (yields much more once sifted/aerated)
2 T of milk for thinning
*Indicates an optional step/ingredients
Beat together butter, shortening, vanilla, and lemon until fluffy. Add in sugar a little at a time with mixer on slow speed. Then turn it to FAST and mix until fluffy. Add milk a little at a time while mixing until you achieve the consistency that you want. We only did about 1 T because we wanted it a little thicker.
If you are in a rush, but still want this delicious confection to take to a party/work, follow the above directions and skip the additional buttercream and piping. Layer the cakes with about 2/3 C of the creamcheese buttercream in between them and then using offset spatula, coat the outside with the remaining buttercream!
The cake can be made about a day ahead and be stored uncovered in the refrigerator. Let it stand out about an hour to allow the cream cheese to soften before serving!
Et voilá! You have a hummingbrid cake!
*indicates an optional step/ingredients