Hummingbird Cupcakes with Pineapple Nectar Centers

I’m about to show you photos of my little, tweety friends. If you don’t dig hovercraft-type creatures then you should surf away. More cupcakes for me!

hummingbird black bamboo two

This is life: tiny, featherweight, nectar-lovin’ life. This is life buzzing around a rooftop, urban garden in an industrial part of the city where (for now) there aren’t many residential buildings. I love living within that contrast.

Little, tweety hummingbirds of all types have been chilling, sipping nectar and buzzing around while construction cranes raise buildings, level roadways a block away.

green hummingbird drinking nectar

I spend serious time in this garden. Even as the weather goes from summertime to bummertime I hang in the garden wearing a puffy coat, trying to slurp down coffee before it turns tepid. I cannot be deterred especially if I have a good book which is how I got interested in hummingbird cake. I read The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen while coffee cooled and I photo-stalked birds on this rooftop.

There’s cake in this book. Cake!

hummingbird bogey

Cake is a magical thing in this novel and in life. There’s all sorts of cakery going on in Allen’s story and in particular there’s a Hummingbird Cake.

The recipe for Hummingbird Cake, a blue ribbon winner at County Fairs, was submitted by Mrs. L.H. Wiggins and published in Southern Living, circa 1978.  The original version was a layered banana cake studded with pecans and canned pineapple chunks, iced with cream cheese frosting.

I love old school, layer cake but I wanted to incorporate the idea of a nectar center. I made banana, pecan cupcakes…

hummingbird cupcakes

…filled with fresh pineapple curd (nectar!), slathered with cream cheese frosting.

hummingbird cupcake with pineapple curd nectar center

The cake is mellow with the smooth sweetness of bananas and fresh vanilla beans. Texture and an earthy nuttiness are courtesy of the pecans. The bright pineapple curd, tart and sweet, rushes in while the cream cheese frosting lays on the sure calm of butter, butter, butter.

Here’s how you make room for the pineapple nectar:

humminbird cupcake cutting the nectar pocket center

Cut a cone-shaped piece of cake from the top center of each cupcake. I scoop just a little more cake out and then cut the pointy part off of the cone-shaped piece. Save the top which should now be kinda flat like a lid. Fill the pocket with pineapple curd.

hummingbord cupcake center filled with pineapple curd

Put the trimmed no-longer-a-cone piece back on top. Top with silky cream cheese frosting.

hummingbird against sky and bamboo mid flight

Cakes and life can have magic within them, don’t you think?

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3 Responses to Hummingbird Cupcakes with Pineapple Nectar Centers

  1. My goodness, you just made my tummy rumble at the wee hours of 7 o’clock in the morning! These look so lovely and delicious. And hummingbirds are awesome. In the summer we’ll get several that flit around our honeysuckle trees. They’re so much fun to watch.

  2. linda cochrane says:

    What a lovely read! it is a rainy day here and the pics of the hummingbirds were lovely…and how I was tempted by the cupcakes! Your ideas, prose and pictures combined for a nice little daydream for me! Visited a hummingbird aviary in the Sonoran Desert last year…saw all different sorts of little nests, eggs cracking with tiny creatures pecking their way out, and many different varieties of hummingbirds…they hovered just inches away from us at times. PS Wish I had a cupcake here to nibble on right now!
    I

    • fatpig says:

      Thanks for the compliments, Linda! Good way to start the day…reading your comment. Now I want to visit a hummingbird aviary. I would love to see one hatch.