Filled With Nutty Goodness
I am always intrigued by the facts on poppy seeds. First of all they are described as kidney shaped, but it’s funny how I have never taken the trouble to look and see the kidney shaped seeds. Apparently the seeds are so small, you need about 1-2 million seeds in a pound.
When I think of poppy seeds the first thing that comes to my mind is a bagel. I love them on bagels. A lot of people think they are a waste of time, because they have no taste. I beg to disagree. When I eat them, I always taste the nutty crunchiness that would otherwise not be experienced, so I insist they have a nutty, aromatic flavour. They are even better, pan roasted on medium heat. Some people also complain that poppy seeds get stuck in their teeth. I somehow, have never experienced, this. Probably I have a lot of space between my teeth or is it because I have tight fitting teeth?
When my niece first saw them, several years ago, on bread, she thought the bread was full of tiny little ants, crawling to attack her. She cried, refused to eat the bread and threw it away. It took me some time to convince her that they were not ants, and she kept on whining, “then what are they? They look like ants. I don’t want to eat ants”
One thing is true about poppy seeds. They are rich in oil and micronutrients like iron, copper, zinc and manganese. I love poppy seeds and so I baked this cake twice, a round one, and a loaf shaped one. The cake is easy to prepare: “mix all ingredients, stir once to combine, then beat with an electric mixer for about three minutes. Pour into prepared tin, and bake for one hour” that’s easy isn’t it? I hope you’ll give it a go. If you do, please give me a feedback on: shape of seeds, taste, how many got stuck in your teeth and whether you enjoyed eating the cake. Thank you for visiting my favourite pastime, please come back again!!! Now for recipe….
I baked this cake twice, in a a 14cm x 24cm (5.5” x 9.5”) loaf pan and a round 20 cm (8 inch) tin (pan). I covered the round cake with a bit of left-over butter icing and then sprinkled with poppy seeds.
Poppy Seed Cake
Preparation time: 15 minutes, and 1 hour standing time; Baking time: 1 hour; Makes: 8-10 slices
- 50g (⅓ cup, 2oz) poppy seeds
- 180ml (¾ cup) milk
- 185g (¾ cup, 6½oz, 1.6 stick) butter
- 2 teaspoons vanilla essence
- 250g (1 cup, 9oz) castor sugar
- 3 eggs
- 300g (2½ cups, 10½oz) self-raising flour or use all-purpose flour and add 2½ teaspoons baking powder.
- Preheat oven to 360°F (180°C). Grease a 14cm x 24cm (5.5” x 9.5”) loaf pan. Line the base and sides with parchment (grease-proof) paper, grease paper well or you can just grease and flour the pan. This works fine too and takes less time!
- Combine poppy seeds and milk in a bowl, stand 1 hour.
- Add butter, essence, sugar, eggs, and sifted flour to poppy seed mixture. Give it a quick stir to loosely combine ingredients.
- Beat on low speed with electric mixer until combined, then beat mixture on medium speed for 3 minutes, or until mixture is changed in colour.
- Pour into prepared pan. Bake for about 1 hour. Stand 5 minutes before turning on wire rack to cool.
- **I weigh the flour and butter, I do not use cup measures as the weight of a cup of flour tends to vary based on individual interpretation, (from 125g to 13og to 155g per cup).
Points to note:
- I always weigh ingredients, especially the flour and butter. You can use cup measures, but please note if you scoop flour directly from the bag you will end up with 150-185 g of flour instead of the recommended 125g. I suggest you spoon the flour into the cup, heaping it up over the top, then slide a knife across the top to level off the extra. Be careful not to shake or tap the cup to settle down the flour or you will have more than you need. You can also sift the flour first then scoop. My advice: please buy a weighing scale.
- Please note that oven temperatures are given as a guideline only. You may need to add or reduce the suggested temperature depending on your oven. I baked the cake at 360°F (180°C) for 60 minutes.
- If you use all-purpose flour add 1teaspoon baking powder for every 125g (1 cup) flour.
- Last updated: 18 November 2014