Hummingbird Bundt Cake
Hummingbird Cake is a Southern thing because I had never heard of it until we moved to Charlotte. My husband’s grandmother bought us a lifetime subscription to Southern Living Magazine just after we settled into our first house here. It was that magazine that introduced me to all kinds of Southern delicacies like stewed collard greens, vinegar-based BBQ sauce, sweet tea and the Hummingbird Cake.
The recipe for the original cake was supposedly submitted to Southern Living the year I was born (let’s just say it was a long time ago) by a woman in North Carolina. It became the magazine’s most popular recipe to date. However, no one is certain that she actually invented the cake, so the mystery of its origin remains.
I was compelled to make this cake when a little hummingbird came to visit me earlier this week. It has been humming around my kitchen window; an uncommon sight. I wonder where it came from or why it chose to observe the goings-on in my kitchen. But, I enjoy watching him…he is a remarkable display of nature.
When we lived in California, our neighbors were scientists. Can you just picture our dinner parties? “Two accountants and two scientists try to make a meal…” It sounds like a bad joke. Anyway, one of them studied hummingbirds. For a living. He placed a sugar-water feeder outside his kitchen window and would observe them.
Once, one of them collapsed on the threshold of our entryway and we rushed the little guy to our neighbor. He wasn’t worried and explained that their bodies can enter a near comatose state in order to keep it from starving. He laid the bird in the shade and it popped back up within minutes. I had a whole new respect for the hummingbird. I’d have a much more svelte figure if I could go comatose when hungry.
This cake is moist and quite sweet. I made it in a bundt pan because I don’t think it needs a whole lot of icing. If you follow my recipe for the glaze, you’ll have more than enough and the result is outstanding!