Julie’s Vintage Hawaiian Mango/Mac Nut Bread/Cake w/Pasta Flowers

Julie’s Vintage Hawaiian Mango/Mac Nut Bread/Cake w/Pasta Flowers



Kulii’s (Julie’s) Vintage Hawaiian Mango/Mac Nut Bread Cake with Pasta Flowers

(I love long names, if you hadn’t noticed.)

I’m spending a week at the beach condo and thought I would revisit our Hawaiian roots and have some fun with it.  We lived in Hawaii for 13 glorious years and loved everything about it.  The food, lifestyle, clothing, and not to mention all the flowers.

We have a lot of the same flowers and fruits here in Florida so it was just a matter of gathering everything together and bringing it all out here to the beach for the week.  My car was packed!  It was all worth it though. 

I love anything vintage and this Hawaiiana serving try is a favorite of mine along with my beautiful maiden here.  She looks Filipino to me.  She very well could be as Hawaii is a melting pot of many Asian and Polynesian cultures. 

My Grandmother Nellie Mae, photo above, spent many a vacation in Hawaii long before Gordon and I moved there ourselves.  It’s with her in mind that I based this recipe for a vintage mango bread cake. 

To be clear, the reason I am referring to this as a ‘bread cake’ is because I combined the ingredients of a vintage Hawaiian mango bread, and a vintage Hawaiian mango cake.  I realize the ‘proper’ name would be ‘loaf cake.’  But I don’t care to use the proper name.  Hawaii is a very laid back state where casualness trumps all rules of etiquette.  SHAKA!! 


Gordon’s Outrigger Pineapple

I originally got the idea to make this when I was looking through an old vintage Hawaiian cookbook of mine.  The kind of cookbooks that I would buy when we lived in Hawaii were mostly found at thrift stores and library book sales.  Most were old at the time and a bit beaten up but never underestimate a beautiful treasure hidden right in front of your eyes. 

This is by no means a “healthy” bread cake.  This is more meant to be eaten for a special occasion.  As a borderline diabetic myself, there is no way that I could eat very much of this.  But I did eat one slice and Gordon took the rest into work the following day to share with his co-workers.  They loved it!

To me desserts are to be eaten sparingly. 

I didn’t grow up eating lots of cake and ice cream, they were reserved for birthday’s and other special occasions. 

So when I make any kind of a cake, it is for special reasons, not everyday.

Pasta Flowers

I had this bag of pasta flowers that I had bought at a Tuesday Morning and hadn’t done anything with them yet.  So when I was creating in my mind my mango/mac nut bread cake, I got the idea to somehow add these flowers as a garnish to the top.  They just looked very Hawaiian to me. 

Can’t Have Cake Without Ice Cream

(Don’t forget the orchid.)

I started eating it all before we took the photo so I had to stop and restrain myself.

Add some Pineapple Juice and We’re all Set


This Talenti Gelato is the best! 

The Caribbean Coconut is to me what Heaven would taste like.

Mango is Pretty Good Too!


Nellie Mae Keith Haskin in Hawaii

I wanted to use my Grandmother’s old Sunbeam Mixer for this bread cake as she used it to make many a cake herself.


Me in the Condo Kitchen Ready to Start

You can see how messy everything is but we are at the beach, hence the cooler’s and beach chairs, beach buckets…..

Most of our tropical plants, leaves, and flowers I brought from home from our backyard but I did buy the grand vanda orchid for just this occasion. 

Main Ingredient:  Mangos

The dwarf bananas are just for snacking on.

Ready to Get Started

The Ingredients For the Bread Cake:

(We did double the recipe so as to have two bread cake’s.  Also some of the ingredients from the original recipe that we based this bread cake on, were very outdated so we reworked it for us.)

2 Cups Flour

2 t. Baking Soda

1 t. Baking Powder

1/2 t. Salt

1 1/2 Cups Sugar

1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil

1/2 Cup Softened Butter/ Margarine

1 t. Vanilla

2 Cups Chopped Mango’s, Cubed

3 Eggs

1/2 Cup Chopped Macadamia Nuts


I used a separate bowl to mix my dry ingredients.

Adding the Flour

Adding the Baking Soda, Baking Powder, and Salt

Then Add the Sugar

Whisk the dry ingredients together well.

Here I am using cooking spray with flour in it to the loaf pan I will be using to bake my bread/cake in.

While my margarine is softening it’s time to cut up the mango’s.

You’ll need a cutting board, a bowl and a good knife.

I’m not exactly the best mango cutter, but I do manage.

You first want to cup off each end of the mango so that you can stand it up to cut down the sides. 

Try and slide the knife as close as possible to the inside seed of the mango.

You will end up with the two sides of the fruit.

Now you want to use the knife to cut long slices down the fruit but not cutting through the skin underneath.

Cut vertical and horizontal.

Now just fold open the mango and have the chunks fall into the bowl.  Do this to two mango’s.


Now it’s time to cream the butter/margarine in the mixer’s small bowl.

With these old mixer’s you do have to wipe down the sides of the bowl.

Now we place the dry ingredients into the larger mixing bowl and add the vegetable oil.  Also add the softened creamed butter.

Adding the Eggs

Next Comes the Vanilla

Now you just want to mix everything together in the mixer for just a few minutes on a medium speed.

I do love these old mixer’s.  Sunbeam, Made in the USA!

Now Just Set Aside for Now

Now we Chop our Macadamia Nuts

Add them to the Bowl

Then Add your two Chopped Mango’s and Mix Together

Dollop this Batter into a Loaf Pan

Look at those chunks of Mango!

I usually don’t eat batter because of the raw eggs but in this case I could NOT resist! 

It is the best batter I have ever eaten!


Place into a Pre-Heated 350F Oven for 45 Minutes or so.

Out of the Oven

To me it is beautiful!

You know the bread/cake is done when you insert a toothpick or wooden skewer into it and it comes out clean. 

Let cool on a rack.


Now for the Bread Cake Toppings

This comes from my pure imagination.  I knew that I wanted the pasta flowers on top of the bread/cake.  I had also bought some dried Mango to place on top as well.  Which led me to buying some dried pineapple, which led me to wanting to add some roasted coconut, and more macadamia nuts…..  My imagination can go on, and on, and on sometimes.

Toasting the Coconut

The Coconut will be used in a few things, not just to sprinkle on top of my bread/cake.

This is very easy to do.  Just place the shredded coconut onto a cookie sheet and place into a 350F oven for just a few minutes.  Watch to make sure that it turns brown, but doesn’t burn.  Then remove from oven and stir it around, then place back into the oven for a few more minutes.


Gordon Removing our Bread/Cakes from the Oven

Let Cool Thoroughly on a Rack

Our Bread/Cake Toppings

Dried Mango Strips, Dried Pineapple Chunks, Macadamia Nuts, Pasta Flowers, Roasted Coconut

Our Ingredients for our Mango Bread/Cake Toppings


Dole Pineapple

From Hawaii

Of course!

Gordon Ready to Slice the Pineapple

We want to grill some pineapple to add that great flavor to our bread/cake.

You want to soak your wooden skewers in water so that they don’t catch fire on the grill.

Just chop up the pineapple into chunks and skewer for the grill.

Grilling only take a few minutes.  You just want them to brown a little bit.

Look at those charred marks!

Pineapple on Pineapple


Now it’s time to create the flower pasta glaze.

We had this bag of pasta flowers and I knew they would look wonderful on top of my bread/cake but I didn’t know how they would taste.  So I went to Gordon and asked if he could make this work so that I get my beautiful presentation, and that it taste good too.

So while he was grilling the pineapple down by the pool on the grill, I was boiling the pasta flowers.  I did know to just boil them about 5 minutes instead of the 7 -9 minutes from the package instructions.  I didn’t want them to fall apart.  I wanted them to be a bit firm.  But I also knew that Gordon would be cooking them some more in the glaze he had planned.

So I picked out the firmest ones for the glaze that Gordon would be making.

Ingredients for the Glaze:

1 1/2 Cups Orange Juice

3/4 Cup Pineapple Juice

1/2 tsp Cinnamon

1/2 Cup Stevia Brown Sugar (You can use any brown sugar that you like.)

4 – 5 Tbsp Butter

Place all ingredients in your large sauce pan or what we used, a Wok, and mix well.

Reduce the liquid by half on med. high temp.

The liquid will turn into a syrup as it thickens.

Gordon had the liquid boiling on the stove top for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir the liquid testing its thickness.

Smelling up the kitchen!  Turning nice and rich and thick.

Here Gordon added an extra tablespoon of butter to give the glaze a glossy look to it.

Once thickened, turn the heat down to low and add your Macadamia nuts and pasta stirring well to coat the ingredients.

The pasta will start to absorb the sweet sauce.

You just want to coat the pasta and macadamia nuts for just a few minutes in the glaze.

Now add your grilled pineapple to the mix and stir well.

You can see the glaze start to thicken into a syrup.

Here Gordon is removing MY bread cake from the pan.

(Taking all the credit, as usual)  🙂

Look how beautiful!

  I love how you can see the mango through the bread cake.

With the cake cooled and the pasta ready, it’s time to decorate.



I love a clean slate!

I’m Ready to Decorate

I’ve got my dried mango strips, dried pineapple, pasta flowers, whole macadamia nuts, and grilled pineapple with the delicious glaze, and the roasted coconut.

It’s kind of like painting a picture.  You just start and it evolves as you go.

This was a lot of fun to do.

I believe that it looks very Hawaiian, which was what I was going for.


(If I do say so myself.)

Aloha and Mahalo,

Kulii (Julie)