If you’re Ukrainian there’s a good chance that you’ve been exposed to a lot of poppy seed stuff.
And if not, welcome to the world of poppy seeds!
I grew up with poppy seeds because Baba always had something poppy seed on the table. Both my Dad and husband are pretty big fans of it while I, on the other hand, could take it or leave it for the majority of my life. That was until I made this Lemon Poppy Seed Torte with Raspberry Curd Filling and White Chocolate Whipped Cream Frosting! Then I totally felt the poppy seed love…
Lemon Poppy Seed Cake
I made this Lemon Poppy Seed Cake for my poppy seed crazy husband’s birthday and it was a huge hit. Even I couldn’t get enough of it!
Poppy seeds are popular in Ukrainian recipes because Ukrainians view them as a symbol of fertility and prosperity. This cake is adapted from a very old skool Ukrainian recipe and it’s a bit heavier in texture than the typical poppy seed stuff that most North Americans are used to. The honey in the recipe, which is very common in Ukrainian baking, gives it a distinct flavor and a rich, moist texture that pairs perfectly with light whipped cream and tart raspberry curd filling. It’s just sooo much better than your coffee shop poppy seed cake – there is no comparison!
Poppy Seed Torte
If you’re wondering what the difference is between a cake and a torte, well, not much, really. A torte is a type of cake, so all tortes are cakes, but not all cakes are tortes. Tortes tend to be layered and a little ‘fancier’. And they are often also denser than a typical cake. For all of those reasons, this cake is considered a torte. If you are interested, you can read more about the differences HERE.
Lemon Poppy seed Torte with Raspberry Curd filling
Raspberry Curd Filling
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/2 pint fresh raspberries or 1/2 of a 12-oz. package frozen raspberries, thawed
- 3 large egg yolks
- 1/3 cup white granulated sugar
- pinch salt
- 1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- fresh raspberries,
- lemon peelings
White Chocolate Whipped Cream Icing
- See recipe in NOTES
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F
- Combine granulated sugar, honey, vegetable oil, cold coffee, lemon juice and lemon zest.
- Beat egg until thick (consistency of gravy), then add to honey mixture and beat again for 2 minutes
- Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, poppy seeds and salt. Gradually add flour mixture to the egg mixture and stir thoroughly after each addition.
- Pour into 3 greased (with Wilton Cake Release - see NOTES) round 8' pans. Fill pans 2/3 full and bake for 40- 50 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean.
Raspberry Curd Filling
- Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the raspberries, egg yolks, sugar and salt, and cook, mashing the berries. Stir frequently at first and then constantly at the end, until thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Pour the mixture through a coarse strainer set over a bowl, pressing hard on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible.
- Cool to room temperature; the curd will continue to thicken as it cools. Stir in lemon juice to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
White chocolate Whipped cream frosting
- Make as per instructions in recipe in NOTES
- Trim cakes
- Add about 1/4 - 1/3 cup layer of white chocolate whipped cream frosting, then add 1/2 the raspberry curd filling.
- Add final cake layer, then add remainder of whipped cream frosting.
- Add fresh raspberries and lemon zest to top of cake
- Gently toss poppy seeds at sides of cake until they stick.