Classic hummingbird cake made with whole wheat flour and sweetened with honey is a quick and easy dessert to whip up for last-minute entertaining this summer.
Friday started out slowly with sunshine streaming in through the curtains. Morning light has this effervescent quality and slight bluish undertones that can make everything seem peaceful. It rests on surfaces, illuminates the glassware as you set out the breakfast dishes. Butter and eggs sizzle softer in the early a.m. hours.
Before long, however, the calm turned into a storm in the harsh midday shadows.
Quarrels and crying dotted the day and the sun carried the news that we’d be hosting my in-laws in a matter of hours. Looking around at broken down children, a week’s worth of dirt and piles on every surface I would like to just snap my fingers and have it all taken care of. Instead, we baked a cake.
The beauty of the hummingbird cake is that it really is of the dump and stir variety. A cake you can make in under an hour, and simplify serving by placing it in jars.
Fillmore Container has started carrying Desserts in Jars. With their selection of mason jars, you definitely won’t have trouble finding what it is you need for your summer canning project, your dessert collection, or even for your wedding. My sister bought a few cases recently for hers from Fillmore Container. To celebrate the arrival of my book to their store, I’m giving away a signed copy of my book plus a case of Ball 4-ounce quilted jars for your next round of last-minute entertaining.
Simply leave a comment on this post to be entered to win!
Fine Print: This giveaway runs until Tuesday, May 28th 2013 at 11:59 p.m. CT. I will pick a winner at random to receive a copy of Desserts in Jars provided by me and a case of Ball jars as described above provided by Fillmore Container.
Tips for Last-Minute Entertaining:
- Open up the outdoor space. Whether or not you have a patio or porch for hosting, entertaining outdoors during the warmer months frees you from the pressure of having a perfectly clean house. Invite people for a barbecue, a bonfire, drinks on the driveway.
- Clean less. Clean your bathroom and generally pick up the main area, but ignore the rest of the house. If you’re hosting outside this is even easier. What they can’t see won’t make a difference here, so close the doors to bedrooms and let the laundry downstairs remain downstairs.
- Prepare easy food. Recently we invited the neighbors over for dinner 30 minutes before it was time to eat for barbecue pork. The pork was already smoked and in the refrigerator. All we needed to do was sauce it and heat it up and prepare a bowl of coleslaw. Grillables, simple salads, and easy appetizers make the food come together quickly.
Ole’s quick grilling tips:
- Reach for thin cuts of meat or grillable fish like salmon for shorter cooking times.
- Finish with a glaze or sauce instead of marinating for hours.
- Add grilled vegetables to the menu. Toss them in oil and salt and cook them while the meat is resting.
- Empty the dishwasher if you have one. Even when I’m cooking or baking, the first thing I do is clear out clean dishes from the dishwasher. This means I can load dirty directly into the open space and keep the clutter off the countertop.
This month’s Eat Well, Spend Less theme is entertaining, and rightfully so. As always, you can check out what others are writing in the Eat Well, Spend Less series:
- Aimee from Simple Bites
- Amy from Kingdom First Mom
- Carrie from Denver Bargains
- Jessica from LifeasMOM
- Katie from Kitchen Stewardship
- Mandi from Easy Homemade
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go get ready for my in-laws to arrive. Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup coconut oil (measured as liquid)
1 cup honey
16 ounces crushed pineapple in its own juice, undrained
2 ripe bananas
1 cup chopped pecans
2 teaspoons vanilla
Honey Cream Cheese Whipped Cream, below
crushed or whole pecans for garnish
Preheat the oven to 325º F. Grease 3 8″ cake pans or 4-ounce mason jars.
In a stand mixer or large mixing bowl mix together the whole wheat pastry flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add in the eggs, coconut oil, honey, crushed pineapple, bananas, pecans, and the vanilla. Mix on low speed until all the ingredients are incorporated.
Pour batter into the prepared pans or jars. Bake for 24-26 minutes until the center is set and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Frost the cake with the honey cream cheese whipped cream topping. Serve.
Makes 18 jar cakes or one 3-layer cake with approximately 16 servings.
1/2 cup honey
1 teaspoon gelatin
2 cups heavy whipped cream
Beat together the cream cheese and the honey until smooth. Set aside.
In a small pan, mix together the gelatin with 3 tablespoons of water. Let it stand until thick. Heat the mixture over low heat until the gelatin dissolves. Remove from heat and cool, but do not allow it to set. Stir the gelatin together with the cream cheese and honey.
Whip the heavy cream until thick with soft peaks. Slowly pour the cream cheese and honey mixture into the bowl while slowly whipping. Whip on high until fluffy.
Keep chilled until ready to frost or serve.
Makes 5 cups whipped cream.