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Nutty Poppy Seed Torte with Creamy Mocha Frosting

Mom’s attractive two-layer poppy seed cake has a sweet, nutty filling and a creamy mocha frosting. It takes a little time to prepare, but everyone will agree that it’s worth the extra effort.—Emma Rea, Columbia, South Carolina
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. + standing Bake: 15 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    10-12 servings


  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup poppy seeds
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 3 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons hot strong brewed coffee


  • In a small bowl, combine milk and poppy seeds; let stand for 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with poppy seed mixture, beating well after each addition.
  • In another large bowl with clean beaters, beat egg whites until soft peaks form; fold into batter. Pour into two greased and floured 9-in. round baking pans.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.
  • For filling, in a small heavy saucepan, combine sugar, sour cream and egg yolks. Cook and stir over low heat just until mixture begins to simmer and reaches 160° or is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon. Remove from the heat; add nuts and vanilla. Transfer to a bowl; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until completely cooled.
  • For frosting, in a small bowl, beat butter, confectioners' sugar and cocoa until fluffy. Add coffee, 1 tablespoon at a time, until mixture achieves spreading consistency.
  • Place one cake layer on serving plate; spread with filling. Top with second layer. Spread frosting between layers and over top and sides of cake. Store in the refrigerator.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 608 calories, 27g fat (12g saturated fat), 103mg cholesterol, 236mg sodium, 86g carbohydrate (62g sugars, 2g fiber), 8g protein.

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