I love American baking. I love the variety and the flavours - I remember my mum had an American cookbook and the cakes were so exotic sounding when I was growing up: red velvet cake, key lime pie, german chocolate cake, boston cream pie and this beauty - hummingbird cake.
Hummingbird cake is made with bananas and crushed pineapple which makes it incredibly moist and one of the great things about the cake recipe is that it is dairy-free. It is traditionally slathered with a cream cheese frosting and this can be made dairy-free as well with just a few easy substitutions. There's quite a few decent vegan substitutions available now for nearly everything dairy and whilst it's relatively easy to get a dairy-free marge from the supermarket, you may have to make a trip to your local health food store to try and get a cream cheese substitution - I got mine from Holland & Barrett, and it's made by Tofutti.
This recipe is ironically by fabulous Southern cook, Paula Deen, well known for her "butter, y'all!" catchphrase. Hummingbird cake is known as a Southern specialty so it's no surprise her version is all over the internet. This cake gives out American sized portions too, and you'll need three 8 inch pans for the layers, and you'll also need cup measurements.
Dairy-Free Hummingbird Cake
3 cups self-rising flour
2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil (Note: You could add just 1/2 cup of oil if you wish)
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
2 very ripe large bananas, mashed
1 small can crushed pineapple, with juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 large eggs, beaten
Cream cheese frosting (recipe below)
Extra pecans for decoration
1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celcius. Grease three 8-by-2-inch round cake pans, tapping out excess flour; set aside.