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Erna's Poppy Seed Cake

I got this recipe from my friend Erna, who makes fabulous German Pastries and is an excellent baker. This cake has a poppy seed cake base, a custard filling covered in chocolate. Delicious!

  • 3 eggs separated
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 chopped nuts, any is fine but I used almonds
  • 1/2 cup poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Separate egg yolks and egg whites
  2. beat whites until stiff peaks form
  3. beat eggs and sugar separately
  4. add oil to the egg yolks
  5. fold in the dry ingredients including nuts and vanilla
  6. gently fold in the egg white
  7. bake in a greased 9x13 pan for 30 min. @ 350
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
Spread evenly over cooled cake.

  • 3 squares of semi-sweet chocolate melted with 2 tablespoons butter
  • Pour over top.
Add toasted almonds over top when chocolate is still wet, optional.

NOTE: It is best to cut the cake into desired serving pieces before the chocolate sets and is still soft. Keep cold, and is good right out of the freezer.


  1. I love poppy seed in baking. Thanks for what looks like another winner.

  2. mmhmm I love poppy seeds, gret idea!

  3. I would LOVE this and the frosting is so different and looks so good! WOW!

  4. I'm pretty sure I can taste that through the blog!!! Wow! For the middle layer, it says "1/2 cup incing sugar" - is that supposed to be icing sugar, like powdered sugar or is there really a thing called incing sugar because I'm totally clueless!!?? I really do want to make this!! YUM ~ ♥

  5. Oh that looks soooo good,especially since my tummy is growling right now.:)

  6. Oh my that looks seriously good...

  7. This cake looks luscious! I just found this blog and am I glad. Can't wait to read more and scan the recipes. I love to cook ~ bake especially. Thank you for sharing!

  8. Someone goofed the recipe for the custard was omitted. The picture looks great but the cake cannot be reproduced. :(

  9. Anonymous

    the custard is the icing part with the egg yolks, butter and icing sugar.
    then you pour over the melted chocolate.
    i believe the recipe is in order.

    just for info sake the cake always taste better the next day.

    i hope this explains things.

  10. I can't wait to try this!! Thanks so much for the clear-up and I'm guessing that icing sugar is powdered sugar. If that's wrong, just e-mail me ( and I'll be on my merry way - I love it here!

  11. This looks so good..I love anything poppyseed!

  12. Just doing a bit of catching up and say...what a wonderful cake! I love poppyseed anything and this is a new twist to me! I am making it for the son's homecoming!!!!!!

  13. Just surfed your blog..i WILL be trying that buffalo chix recipe you posted...just wanted to post, my hubbys favorite aunts name was Erna, its not a name you hear very often..thanks for reminding me of her this holiday season :-)....(she was quite the German baker as well!!!)

  14. so the custard is raw egg yolks?! I guess I won't be making this after all.

  15. This cake looks amazing, I would love to make it, but have never made a custard before. Do you cook the custard or is it done with raw eggs? Thanks in advance for clearing this up for me!!! :)

  16. hello anonymous.....nope the eggs are raw and you just mix it like an icing. don't let that freak you out with raw eggs. but if you are uncomfortable with it just do it without. i have been using raw eggs in recipes for a long time and havn't had any concerns, but use your own judgment.

  17. I am so happy to have found this as my mom has a similar recipe but she wrote no instructions and just scratched out a list of ingredients. It was her favorite Mennonite recipe which she referred to as tweeties. This was her last baked good, she made for us to taste the weekend she was tragically killed in a car accidnt. thanks so much.

  18. Haylie, I am glad that you have found the recipe that brings so many dear memories to you.
    I am so sorry for your loss.
    I have another recipe that is similar and instead of poppy seeds it has shaved chocolate in it.

  19. I am making this dessert today and don't know what to do with the custard. Do you cook it on the stove or just mix it? Should the butter be hard or melted? Thanks!

  20. Jessica, I'm sorry you did not get a reply on this in time, obviously ... but the custard is not a cooked custard. You beat the soft butter with the rest of the ingredients and spread it ... yes it's raw eggs ... so use your own discretion on that.

  21. It's been 2 days and all I can think about is baking, baking, BAKING!! I need to get this out of my system and I JUST bought some poppyseeds and forgot to use them, so this is perfect. I've never had this cake before but I'm excited to give it a try!