I have been WAY too busy lately! Pretty much ever since school started, it’s just been one thing after another. Every single day of every single weekend AND most weekdays have had birthday parties, baby showers, school sports events, church group events, library club, etc. It happens to me at least once a year. . . and I work myself into an illness.
So now that I am sick and have no energy to do anything else, I figured it was a good day to finally write a blog post!
Poppy Seed Cake with Vanilla Pudding. It was one of my favourite desserts as a kid! Not the fastest or easiest to make, since it has two components, so it was noteworthy when Mom put in the extra time and effort. I hadn’t made it in YEARS, mostly because I didn’t have a Bundt pan, but my in-laws recently moved to a smaller place and got rid of a bunch of stuff, and I grabbed my Mother-in-Law’s Bundt pan from their garage sale. Yay! I decided to make this recipe as a special after-school snack for my kids on the first day of school this year.
Mmmmmmmmmm. . . just looking at these photos is enough to make me want to bake again! Especially since I’m sick and craving comfort food. The warm, homemade vanilla pudding on top is what really does it for me. So smooth and silky, with just the right amount of vanilla. If you are used to the store-bought, “instant” type of pudding, you are in for a revelation!
POPPY SEED CAKE WITH VANILLA PUDDING
For the Cake
• 3/4 cup poppy seeds
• 1 cup milk
• 1 tsp. vanilla
• 3/4 cup butter/canola oil/coconut oil
• 1 1/2 cups sugar
• 2 1/2 cups white flour
• 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
• pinch of salt
• 4 egg whites
Soak the poppy seeds in the milk for 1 hour beforehand, with the vanilla. Grease a Bundt pan thoroughly. I save my butter wrappers for this purpose (a trick I learned from my Mom), and it works like a charm!
If using oil, mix it in with the milk after the hour is up, and add the sugar to the dry ingredients. If using butter or coconut oil, soften at room temperature, and then use a hand mixer or fork to beat in the sugar. Then beat in the milk with poppy seeds and vanilla.
Combine the dry ingredients in their own bowl. Omit the salt if you used salted butter.
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.
Add dry ingredients to wet, stirring until just combined. Fold in the beaten egg whites carefully. Pour the batter into the Bundt pan, and bake for 45 minutes* at 350 degrees F.
*The original recipe from my Mom says to bake for 1 hour, but my cake was definitely done at 45 minutes! Every oven is different though, and even the precise metals used in your bakeware will affect baking times. Cakes are done when they are evenly puffed up, usually browned, and a toothpick comes out clean or with just a few crumbs sticking to it. So if you are making this recipe, start checking your cake at 40 minutes, even if it’s just a look through the glass window of your oven door.*
When the cake is done, remove from oven and place on a rack to cool for 5-10 minutes. Carefully run a sharp knife around the edges of the cake to loosen it from the pan, and then turn pan over, using your cooling rack to catch the cake when it releases. I had to really wack the bottom of my Bundt pan to get the cake to come out, but it did manage to come out unbroken. Allow the cake to cool fully on the rack while you make the pudding.
For the Pudding
• 1/3 cup sugar
• 2 cups milk
• 2 Tbsp. cornstarch
• 4 egg yolks
• 3 Tbsp. salted butter
• 1 tsp. vanilla
Combine the first four ingredients in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until thick. (This takes a while, so you may want to sit on a bar stool if you don’t want to stand for a long time.) When thick, remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla.
To serve, place the cake on a large plate and pour some of the pudding all around the top so that it runs down the sides a bit. Then cut up the cake and pour more warm pudding on each piece. Yummo!
(If not serving right away, do not pour the pudding on the cake at all. The poppy seed cake will be fine at room temperature, but refrigerate the pudding until ready to use. Reheat over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until it is steaming, but not boiling.)
Look at all that poppy seed goodness!
With vanilla pudding perfection. . .