It was later in life that I learned how to make poppy seed cake recipes. These recipes were something that I learned from Sister Gloria and ones which she learned from her mother-in-law. Gloria’s mother-in-law was Hungarian and a wonderful cook. She made all kinds of baked goods with poppy seeds.
I do not remember cooking with poppy seeds as I was growing up, although they are commonly used in German breads and desserts. I do remember the poppy (I do not know if this was the type producing these seeds.) growing around where we lived and they were so pretty. The problem I found with this flower is that the bloom did not last long. They certainly were not suitable to make a bouquet; as soon as you pick them the petals began to fall off. When I was little, I would pick flowers to take to my teacher so I never liked this one. I suppose they were only meant for the seeds.
When I began learning how to make poppy seed cake recipes and other baked goods, I also began learning more about the poppy seed. This seed has been “scandalized” by the opium poppy seed. The opium poppy seed is harvested while the seed pops are green and the latex is plentiful. This latex is processed to produce heroine for illegal drugs and medicinal uses such as sedatives. On the other hand, this tiny seed which we use in cooking is harvested from the greatest quality of the plant when it is ripe and after the pod dries.
Cooks in many parts of the world have learned how to make poppy seed cake recipes for years. Fabulous recipes for cakes and other baked goods have come from all over eastern and central Europe, India, Iran, Turkey and from the Jewish cuisine. To use these seeds in baking, they can be whole or ground. If you are just learning how to make a poppy seed cake, you will come across many recipes which instruct you to “soak” the seeds for various lengths of time before adding them to the recipe. Some baked goods require a poppy seed paste; sometimes I “cheat” and purchase it at the grocery in cans for convenience.
Learn how to make a poppy seed cake recipe like my sister’s. She made it in layers and filled it with custard.
Soak ground poppy seeds in warm milk overnight.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees; grease and lightly flour two 8 inch cake pans.
Sift together flour and baking powder; set aside.
Cream butter; gradually add sugar beating until light and fluffy.
Add flour mixture to creamed mixture alternating with the cold milk.
Beat in poppy seed milk mixture until well blended.
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; fold whites and vanilla into batter.
Divide batter evenly between prepared cake pans; bake about 30 minutes or until pick comes out clean.
Cool cakes 10 minutes and remove from pans; cool completely.
HOW TO MAKE CUSTARD FILLING RECIPE
Scald milk and butter.
Beat egg yolks, sugar and salt; combine with hot milk.
Blend cornstarch with little cold water until smooth; stir into milk mixture.
Cook and stir mixture until thickened; spread between layers.
OPTION: You can frost top and sides with whipped cream or DOUBLE FILLING to cover cake.
Preheat oven to 300F degrees; Grease 8 inch loaf pan, line with parchment paper and grease again.
Combine and mix flour, baking powder and all spices; sift mixture 3 times and set aside.
Cream butter gradually adding sugar and beating until light and fluffy.
Beat in the eggs, then the fruit juice, nuts and fruit; stir in the flour spice mixture.
Spoon into prepared loaf pan; bake 1 ½ to 2 hours until pick comes out clean.
Remove cake from pan and remove parchment paper; cool completely on wire rack.
When cold wrap in wax paper; store in a tightly covered container (Tin or plastic).
Makes one 2 ½ pounds fruitcake.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees; grease and lightly flour tube cake pan.
Combine and mix all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Dump batter in prepared pan; bake 1 hour or until pick comes out clean.
Delicious without frosting or dust with powdered sugar.
Separate eggs; set to room temperature 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees; butter and lightly flour a 9 inch spring form pan.
Beat egg whites until stiff; set aside.
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy; add egg yolks and continue beating until mixture is light.
Mix poppy seeds with chocolate; gently fold chocolate mixture into creamed mixture.
Gently fold beaten egg whites into batter; pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake cake 30 to 40 minutes or until pick comes out clean.
Cool 10 minutes and remove cake from pan; cool completely.
When cake is cold slice it into 2 layers; spread bottom layer with apricot jam and place other layer on top.
Refrigerate cake; before cutting dust with powdered sugar.
Preheat oven to 375F degrees; grease and flour Bundt cake pan.
Add poppy seeds to milk; set aside.
Separate eggs; set at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Cream butter and sugar; add yolks beating well after each.
Combine and mix sour cream and poppy seed mixture.
Sift together flour and baking soda; add to creamed mixture alternating with sour cream mixture.
Beat egg whites until stiff; gently fold into batter; spoon into prepared pan.
Bake cake 45 minutes or until pick comes out clean.
NOTE: If cake browns too early, cover light with foil.
Cool cake in pan 10 minutes; turn out onto plate to cool completely.
Drizzle with icing.
To make ICING mix together 3 tablespoons melted butter, 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 2 cups powdered sugar; beat until smooth. Thin with cream to get pouring consistency. Pour over cake and let drip down the sides.
Soak poppy seeds in water for 3 to 4 hours
Preheat oven to 350F degrees; grease, line with parchment paper, grease and lightly flour three 9 inch cake pans.
Sift together sifted flour, dry milk and baking powder; set aside.
Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy; beat in poppy seed mixture.
Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture beating to blend well (mixture will be thick).
Carefully fold in beaten egg whites until blended; divide batter evenly between prepared pans.
Bake 30 minutes or until pick comes out clean.
Cool cakes in pans 5 minutes; remove from pans and cool completely; slice cakes horizontally making 6 layers.
Make filling and spread between layers, on top and cover sides of cake with a thin coating.
Place cake in the refrigerator to set up.
Frost sides and top of cake with whipped cream; keep refrigerated.
Almond Filling Recipe
Combine cornstarch, dry milk and sugar in a saucepan.
Combine egg yolks, water and amaretto beating to blend well.
Stir and blend well the yolk mixture into the dry ingredients.
Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and smooth; reduce heat and cook another minute.
Remove pan from heat; let cool to room temperature.
Whipped Cream Frosting: Beat 2 Cups of whipping cream and 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar until stiff peaks. Frost top and sides of cake.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees; butter 10 inch spring form pan and sprinkle with graham cracker crumbs and sliced almonds.
Mix together almonds, poppy seeds, wheat flour and baking powder; set aside.
Cream butter with egg yolks, honey, vanilla and brandy; beat until well blended and set aside.
In another bowl beat egg whites and salt until stiff peaks form; fold half of whites into butter mixture.
Place remaining half of whites on top of batter; top whites with almond/poppy seed mixture and fold in.
Spoon ¾ of batter into prepared pan and smooth top; sprinkle grapes over the top and cover with remaining batter.
Bake on lowest shelf of oven for about 45 minutes; REDUCE temperature to 300F degrees.
NOTE: If the cake gets too brown, cover loosely with a piece of foil.
Bake another 30 to 35 minutes until pick comes out clean; turn oven OFF and leave cake in oven 5 to 10 minutes longer.
Remove cake from oven and cover with a towel; let it set 10 minutes and remove cake from pan.
Cool completely on wire rack; dust with powdered sugar.