Tag Archives: pineapple

Pina Colada

Most people think of Saint Patrick’s day when the 17th of March rolls around but I’m reminded of my older sister, Cynthia’s, wedding anniversary.  Almost 40 years ago I was working in Puerto Rico with Delta Airlines and  being away from home had missed all the wedding planning and preparations.  Unable to leave work until the afternoon of the rehearsal dinner, I flew into Fort Lauderdale in time for the rehearsal dinner after-party which I was hosting.  This was almost 40 years ago, when tropical drinks were thought of as exotic and slightly dangerous.  My post-dinner party was to be a Puerto Rican pina colada celebration and I arrived well prepared.  My suitcase was loaded with small cans of Coco Lopez cream of coconut, a product almost unknown here in south Florida at the time, my blender and a blender I had borrowed from a friend.  I had boarded the flight with two handles of golden Puerto Rican rum…one in each hand.  My only instructions for Mama were to stock up on ice, pineapple juice and limes.  Knowing my flight would touch down at about the same time the dessert course was being served I had told Mama I would take a cab to the house; there was no need to send someone to fetch me.  The taxi driver helped me to the front door with all my goodies.  The house was quiet.  I opened the front door and gaily called out, “Hi, everybody!  I’m home!”  My eyes swept the high ceilinged living room and quickly accessed the mood.   Mercy.   Every guest was sitting quietly…politely…ram rod straight.  I turned to my little brother and sister and murmured their orders.  They understood the tragedy of a flat party and the importance of their chores.  Within minutes we had salsa playing, both blenders whirred away offering up a frosty concoction to the waiting crystal goblets which were whisked out of the kitchen and served to the waiting guests.  My brother Tommy, sister Pamela and I happily buzzed about the kitchen mixing batch after batch of rum drinks while enjoying the laughter, cocktail chatter and music from the rest of the house.  We all had a delightful time.  The following day the weather was glorious, the bride was beautiful and glowing and the wedding was exquisite.  We had done our jobs and done them well.  All these years later I wish you a happy anniversary, Cynthia and Wash!

If you’ve never tried making this cocktail at home you must.  This pina colada may be served over ice or with the ice blended in as with a “slushy”.  Either way you’ll find, unlike many mixed and served in bars, hotels and restaurants, it’s not too sweet and much lighter than the aforementioned drinks.  It is best mixed in your largest pitcher or an empty plastic gallon jug then chilled.  If you plan on serving the iced “slushy” version, pack your blender half full of ice, pour in the already mixed drink then blend until liquified.  This recipe doubles or triples well.  Your cocktail will also inspire tropical trade winds when garnished with fresh pineapple spear.  But beware.  They go down quite easily!

Pina Colada

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • the juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) cream of coconut
  • 2 cups golden rum
  • 4 cups pineapple juice, canned is fine
  1. Mix all the ingredients thoroughly in a large pitcher and set in the refrigerator to chill until serving.
  2. Just before serving mix again then pour over ice or pour into blender half packed with ice and blend until liquified.
  3. Serve immediately.



Hot and Gooey Hummingbird Bread Pudding


In preparation for The Prince to come home for spring break I made Hummingbird Bread Pudding with a runny Cream Cheese Pecan Sauce. People, it was crazy good!  I wish I could take credit for the recipe but that would be outright theft.  I’ve had Hummingbird cake a million times but I’m not a big cake baker.  Then I saw it as a bread pudding as I was flipping through my “go to” channels on television.  Hummingbird Bread Pudding?  Brilliant.  It’s easy, fast and oh, so satisfying.  And just a computer search away.  From the Cooking Channel, its proper name is “Donna Bell’s Bakeshop’s Hummingbird Bread Pudding”.  I tweaked it just a little; for instance I used 2% milk instead of whole and I doubled the Cream Cheese Pecan Sauce and also made it a bit thinner…I like to drizzle my sauce rather than drop dollops.  An old, old recipe with a brand new twist…and CREAM CHEESE!  Making the first two of my spring break crew happy, happy boys.

Donna Bell's Bakeshop's Hummingbird Bread Pudding

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Bread Pudding

  • non-stick cooking spray
  • 3 cups whole or 2% milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 bananas, 1 mashed, 1 cut into small pieces
  • 1 1/4 pounds crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1/2 loaf French bread, (I used Brioche), cubed in small pieces

Cream Cheese Pecan Sauce

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 4 tablespoons milk, plus extra if needed to thin
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup toasted, finely chopped pecans to sprinkle on top
  • I double the Cream Cheese Sauce.

Great for breakfast, it's loaded with fruit!
Great for breakfast, it’s loaded with fruit!

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350°.
  2. Grease a 9X13 pan or casserole pan of your choice with the cooking spray.
  3. Whisk together the milk, vanilla and eggs then add the sugar and cinnamon.
  4. Mix in the mashed banana.
  5. Fold in the banana pieces, pineapple, coconut and pecans.
  6. Gently mix in the bread and let sit for 15 minutes to soak up the custard fruit mixture.
  7. Stir once again, pour mixture into casserole dish and bake for about 45 minutes.
  8. For the Cream Cheese Sauce mix the cream cheese with the spoon then slowly add the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
  9. Mix in the milk and vanilla adding milk in very small amounts until it is as thin as you like.
  10. Let the bread pudding cool slightly then drizzle the sauce over the warm cake.  I like to drizzle the sauce over the individual pieces but that’s just me.
  11. Top with the toasted pecans.  Again, I do individual pieces.  It’s the rebel in me.