As part of our awesome home school of awesomeness, we have been doing "Hawai'i Month" in the lead-up to our visit to the Big Island. Our boys really hope to see the volcano and the lava tube, a macadamia nut farm, black sand beaches, and my youngest wants to eat shave ice and see a cowboy! My wishlist mostly includes malasadas and mai tais...
I had a mind to make you guys an Easter cake this week all covered up in coconut and then I realized how well this particular cake fits into our Hawai'i unit, too. Coconut, bananas, pineapple, and vanilla all grow in Hawai'i!
The boys helped me whip this together. I got the recipe from my Mom. When she gave it to me she thought it might be a recipe from a family friend, but having baked it, I can see that it's not the one she used to make. Still, it's pretty darn yummy! It's called a Butterfly Cake. I've seen other similar recipes online called Hummingbird Cakes.
Aaahhh a cake lovely enough for a pedestal.
Emperor Zurg crashed the photoshoot...
2 C sugar
1 C oil
3 C flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
8 oz. can crushed pineapple
2 C mashed bananas
1 C chopped pecans
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
Blend sugar, oil, and eggs well. Sift flour, salt and baking soda together. Add to the sugar mixture. Add the rest of the ingredients. Bake in a tube pan for 1 hour 10 minutes at 350°. Remove from pans and cool on a wire rack for at least two hours before frosting.
16 oz box confectioner's sugar
8 oz cream cheese
1 stick unsalted butter
coconut flakes (optional)
One of the Hummingbird Cake recipes I found said to divide the batter into three round cake pans and double the frosting recipe. I used the frosting recipe above and baked it in two round cake pans. As you can see, I didn't have quite enough frosting. Also, dividing it into two pans caused the cake to be a little too thick, so the cake was pretty dry on the outside. I remedied that by using a tip from Bakerella and used a spray bottle to spray some coconut milk on the cake to moisten it. It didn't add as much coconut flavor as I was hoping, but it did a great job of moistening the cake!
Here is a little of what the library dished up for our study this month:
Pikoi and Other Legends of the Island of Hawai'i Our favorite story is "The Gift of Ku," a legend about how breadfruit was brought to the island.
Hawaiian Word Book Great, illustrated kid's dictionary of introductory Hawai'ian words includes a pronunciation CD
Pele and the Rivers of Fire, an introduction to Pele and her brother shark and sister waves.
The Last Princess: The Story of Princess Ka'iulani of Hawai'i. This one was a little long for the boys, but it was interesting for me!
Putumayo Kids Presents Hawai'ian Playground (CD) We translated some of the lyrics so it's a great way to reinforce some of the language they are learning.
Travel with Kids-Hawaii: The Big Island of Hawaii (DVD)This series is great. We watched the Kauai one last year and it was great to have an idea of some kid-friendly places to go.
We built and erupted a volcano and studied about how volcanoes work.
I can not believe how much they loved this volcano!
We also ate Puka dogs, taro chips, and Hawaiian Punch (The things I do in the name of education...)
If you'd like to see more of what I want to squeeze into our visit to the Big Island, check out my Pinterest board!