A tangy, sweet, moist loaf loaded with lemon flavor and dotted with crunchy poppy seeds!
It’s back to winter weather here in Boston, but we’re going to pretend it’s not and instead pretend that Spring is in full bloom with daffodils in abundance, bulky coats in storage, and sunshine 24/7.
Well… not 24/7, because then I wouldn’t be able to sleep. I need darkness.
Mind you, I don’t really sleep now so I guess that wouldn’t really make a difference.
Although I do wonder how people survive when it’s dark ALL THE TIME in Alaska. I’d just be fighting to stay awake all the time.
… what was I talking about again? Oh, right – Spring!
For me, Spring is all things yellow. Yellow sun, yellow flowers, and yellow lemons. I freaking love lemons. And for that reason, I freaking love lemon loaf.
But why stop at just lemon loaf? Let’s jazz things up and add poppy seeds to the mix.
There’s a restaurant I love in Yarmouthport, Massachusetts called Jacks Outback II where I’ve had lemon poppy seed pancakes on multiple occasions, and sweetmotherofgod are they delicious.
This is obviously not pancakes. But it’s still freaking delicious. If you’ve noticed, I have a real thing for that crack along the top of a nice warm loaf. It’s really the only kind of crevice that I like, because most crevices are in roads or something where it’s just dangerous and not at all delicious.
And those poppy seeds – just look at them. I don’t know how, but they somehow manage to space themselves exactly as much as they should be for an even distribution. I’m 99% sure it’s not anything I’m doing and they’re just magical.
I brought this loaf into my office as reward (read: bribe) for completing their work on schedule, and it was well received. Mid bite, I was asked, “So, when are you going to bring this in again?!”
I’ve made it with and without a glaze, and I love it both ways. It’s certainly not lacking in flavor, so if you want to save some calories you can leave it off and you won’t be disappointed. Sometimes I want an extra kick in the mouth of lemon, and this glaze totally delivers.
That’s a decent seal of approval, if you ask me.
You know who else approves of this? This ridiculous cat. While I was shooting my pictures, he was desperately trying to get into the box under my setup. There was nothing in said box, it was just an empty box. But of course, cat, so he had to get in it – regardless of what was happening on top of it.
I advise that you make this and eat it, and not just place it on top of a box and crawl into said box.
… or go ahead and do that. It’s your life.
After you’ve made this recipe, please leave a comment below with a rating – and if you came from Pinterest, add a photo of what you make to the pin to share your experience!
Lemon Poppy Seed Loaf
- 1 ½ cups all purpose flour, or 1:1 gluten free flour
- 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- 3 eggs, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup yogurt or sour cream
- ½ cup vegetable, corn, or coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon bakery emulsion or lemon extract, or to taste
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon bakery emulsion or lemon extract
- 1 ½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9x5 loaf pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, poppy seeds, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine eggs, sugar and yogurt/sour cream. Whisk until smooth and pale yellow (it'll look kind of like custard at this stage).
- Add oil, lemon emulsion and lemon zest and whisk to combine.
- Add dry mixture to bowl of wet mixture and use a spatula to stir until just combined and mostly smooth.
- Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake for 40 minutes*. To prevent the top from burning before the inside is fully cooked, tent a piece of foil over the top and bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Let cool in plan for at least 10 minutes, then carefully turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- If adding glaze, combine all ingredients in a small bowl until completely combined and smooth and brush over top of loaf. Let set, then slice, serve and enjoy!