Poppy Seed Walnut Cake

  • Serves: Makes two 8- or 9 x 2-inch pans
  • Baking Temp (degrees F): 350
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This is a fine textured cake loaded with poppy seeds, chopped walnuts, and a grated apple for moistness. For this recipe, you can split the layers and sandwich them with a thick filling of apricot or raspberry jam, or fill and ice the cake with Espresso Whipped Cream. Or, the cake slices can be toasted and served with a pat of melting butter on the top. Poppy seeds are ubiquitous in Austria and used in a myriad of recipes. They contain a high percentage of oil, poppy seeds can go rancid if they are not used fairly soon after purchase. Freeze them if not using right away to keep them fresh. Taste or smell the seeds before buying or using to make sure they aren't bitter or stale.

The recipe's author, Chef David Bouley, from which this recipe has been adapted, has received numerous three and four star food awards and has studied with many well-known chefs. His recipe philosophy is to use fresh ingredients and to highlight ingredients of the season. Chef Bouley believes in making homey, plain cakes that can be dressed up in myriad ways, such as this one.

Pastries at Bouley Bakery, NYC. Photo by Sarah Phillips © Sarah Phillips

Bread at Bouley Bakery, NYC. Photo by Sarah Phillips © Sarah Phillips

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