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Poppy seeds that we eat

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Just curious - Does anyone know what kind of poppy seeds we eat ? - the ones on bagels and in poppyseed cake and such. And has anyone tried to germinate them?

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

I was wondering the same. My friend had given me a package of Poppy Bread Seed, Papaver somniferum. Richters Herb Catalog also lists Papaver rhoeas.

www.richters.com

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Thanks Joanna! Just went to your link. It says of papaver rhoeas "seeds are delectable on cookies, breads, rolls.......colorful garden annual." Also says easy germination. Has anyone tried to germinate these when purchased from sources for food? Will check plantfiles or elsewhere to see what they look like.

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Plantfiles says also called corn poppy, field poppy, flanders poppy, shirley poppy. 12-18" and appears to come in numerous colors.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

poppy seeds that come on bagels and cakes and bread will not germinate they have been cooked

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

I was asking about the ones that you buy to use in cooking (before they're cooked!).

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

they are probably treated with ultra violet so they are safe for consumption

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

I guess the only way to find out is to try to sprout them. Guess I'll have to add that to my to do list, since no one has come forward with a reported attempt.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

ok well poppy seeds are better started where they are to grow I clean as area spritz with water top sow just lightly pat the seeds to the soil and I use a plastic dome so the birds do not eat the seeds check everyday spritzing with water if soil is not moist and wait should be up in three to four weeks wait till soil warms up

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Thanks. I'll post results when I try.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

I use to love going to richters it was only a 40 minute drive from where i use to live amazing place

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

Boy, this thread got a little confusing :)

I think Perenniallyme & I were on the same thought. Wanting to seed/germinate a specific type of poppy that grow, flower and will produce seedheads/seeds that are suitable for using in baking. Although all poppies produce seeds, not all types are suitable for eating for various reasons. If you look at the Richter's catalog, they do a great job of tagging all their seeds with icons...the fork & knife indicating specific plant uses.

Anyways it was an interesting discussion.

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Thanks Joanna. I was actually more interested in finding out what kind of flowers those seeds would produce. I definitely don't have room to grow enough poppy seeds for eating - It's getting to where I have to decide what to remove from my garden in order to plant something else - at least in the sunny area.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

Looks like most are full dble blooms

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

It are the seeds of Papaver somniferum (opium poppy) that is mostly used. Altough it's legal food, you may react positive if you've eaten it and must undergo a drugstest.

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Thanks Jonna. No wonder I like poppyseed cake and poppyseed filling in pastries so much! And thankfully I've never had to undergo a drug test.

Seward, AK(Zone 3b)

Any Papaver somniferum, Opium poppy makes copious amounts of edible seeds... the type one eats in poppyseed muffins, on bread, etc. However, for the best seeds, one needs to grown somniferum poppies that are specifically grown for the culinary seeds. Look for seeds that are listed as 'bread seed'. Hungarian Bread Seed is one variety. The best culinary poppy seed are a blue-gray color.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

my girlfriend works for corrections canada and she was on a poppy seed kick a few years ago and when she had her annual testing it came back positive thank god that she had 15 years on the job and since the amount was so low her boss asked her what she had been up to since she had been informed about the test and then it hit her that it must have been all the poppy seed so a retest in 30 days was ordered and no more poppy seeds for her lol hahhaha

Seward, AK(Zone 3b)

I was told some time ago that more sophisticated drug testing does not pick up the usual consumption of culinary poppy seed... such as on bread as a garnish or an occasional poppy seed muffin. It's too bad, if that is not the case. Good culinary seed has a wonderful flavor and adds much toasted onto a loaf of bread during baking.

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Hope you are right informed. On the other hand: who will have to undergo a drugstest? Not the average gardener

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

in small quantity that is right but she was on a kick so everything she was eating was covered in them lol just to many levels high enough to be a concern

Seward, AK(Zone 3b)

It's funny how we can compartmentalize our view of a common object. Over the years, on holidays, I've made large braided loaves of egg bread. I usually baste the tops with egg and sprinkle seeds on them.... poppy seed or sesame. One year, I looked all over for my shaker of poppy seed, but couldn't find it. Just as I was ready to opt for sesame, I realized that I had little bags of poppy seeds in seed planting totes... more than I would ever plant. They worked just fine.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

all they are is perennial poppy seeds mind you the store ones are treated with believe it or not radiation to clean them lol so they will not mold in humid kitchens, but in the olden days they just used what they had collected seeds and they work great

I love to add a few violas to my salands in summer as a decoration I have been asked again and again if they can be eaten and the answer is yes all violas are good to eat the taste is a little bitter but will not hurt anyone.

Indianapolis, IN(Zone 5b)

My DexH has experimented with growing poppy seeds from commercial spice companies for years. He plants the seeds right out of the bottle into the garden.

McCormick poppy seeds produce single white flowers. He has grown seeds from Badia, a spice company found in the Hispanic food aisle in the grocery, and seeds from an Israeli spice company. Both produced single purple flowers. He tried Durkee seeds years ago, and got flowers from one of 2 bottles, but doesn't remember what they looked like.

It is important to use fresh seed (not the bottle of poppy seeds that has been in the back of your spice rack for the last 7 years.) It is a bad sign if the seeds are clumped up in the jar. He is going to send me pictures of the poppies he has grown from culinary seed.



Indianapolis, IN(Zone 5b)

This is a poppy grown from what Bob believes is the Badia brand of poppy seeds. (The picture is taken with his phone, so the quality isn't great.)

Thumbnail by lily_bud
Seward, AK(Zone 3b)

In my experience, the best culinary Papaver somniferum seed comes from the pale lavender poppies with a darker center. Whatever the color of the flower, look for the gray-blue seeds. They are the tastiest.

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Thanks for the info lily_bud. That's very interesting - and sounds like a cheap source for some lovely flowers. Think I'll try out the poppy seeds sold loose by my local food co-op and see what they produce.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

yes those are all perennial poppies they have the gray blue larger seeds we see on bagels and in cakes etc.... I grow all kinds of them

a couple of years ago when I lived in toronto I was growing all kinds in the back yard and it was never a problem but one year I decided to grow them along the driveway since nothing ever survived it two feet wide and 40 feet long of dry dry dirt well I started them and they did great the next summer when they went into bloom I had the police at my house asking what I was doing with so many opium poppies I just gave them a stupid look of why dont you like my flowers and showed them around the property he kept taking notes and everything then I showed him the awards that I had won and picture of my property in the calender that he recognized as the one in his kitchen and he then proceeded to caution me about not letting anyone take the raw heads since they are the one to produce the drug I promised I would carefully remove and dispose of the heads at least the ones in the front so nobody would get them lol

he explained that the police do not usually bother gardeners but that it is not legal to grow opium poppies in canada lol and since I had over what he figured was 500 blooms on that day lol it could be considered a gow up for opium

everyone I know has them but I did go a little over board lol I had every color of perennial poppies I could get from stores, ebay, trade or what ever even collected from public gardens DH hates it when I scam seeds out of just about everywhere if it private property I will ring the bell and ask permission he just hate that hahahah I just tell people what a nice garden they have and they are more than happy to share a few seeds

mona

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

That's a funny story Mona. You'd think the police would have something better to do than worry about gardeners growing opium poppies in their yards.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

well it seemed that a neighbor two doors down that was causing problems for everyone in the area had called to complain that I was running a drup lab with all these lol poppies that is why I invited the officers in and allowed them to walk around the house after seeing all the magazines and arts and crafts and flats pot seeds and everything else they knew that I was just a crazy gardener lol hahahha

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

There's always a neighbor like that everywhere. I finally got rid of the crazy angry alcoholic guy next door (he moved, that is - though I would have happily killed him) who used to do things like scratch people's cars and throw trash cans on top of my flowers and worse, only to finally discover who the neighborhood plant thief is, and it's someone I know who was even in our community garden down the street until she was kicked out last year for not participating in meetings and cleanup days. I had even given her plants, but still, on a regular basis, plants disappear from my front yard and the yards of my neighbors.

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Making opium out of Opium poppies is not easy, it's a very complicated chemical process, so every well thinking person must now that we gardeners only grow them for fun. My neighbour is a policeman, but he never makes problems, he knows why I'm growing Poppies. Well, I must say it is allowed here in Belgium to grow these.
I am Dutch, and in the Netherlands one is even allowed to grow Cannabis. 3 Plants, just for own use. Here in Belgium it's forbidden. Maybe I will try it once, not for using it, but just to see what kind of plant it is. I doubt anyone here will recognize it.

A lot of my (wild) Poppies look like the Badia. I always try to collect as much seeds as I can. What I don't use myself, I feed the birds, they like it.

Mona in Metcalfe, ON(Zone 5a)

actually it is an easy process of just thin slicing the poppy head right after the petals fall off on an angle using a rasor blade its done in the early morning as the day heats up the head then secreets liquid to close the cuts which is the crystal for of the drug, pure opiate then it has to be cut with other products down to about 20 per cent pure and there it is, I found all the info on the net have never tried and do not intend to,

but for your information when removing head that are not completely dry use gloves since if the liquid gets on your skin it is absorbed and you can get a nasty buss and later a major head ache enough of it and it can become dangerous.

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Scicciarella, I didn't know that. I know that some people do it the way you describe it, but the effects are very week comparising real opium. Well, at least that is what I thought.

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

Geez. You guys sure seem to know a lot about making opium. Let's hope big brother isn't watching!

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Having the knowledge doesn't mean I practice it. No way, I don't need that kind of stimulation. Gardening makes me happy enough.

Jamaica Plain, MA(Zone 6a)

(hope you know I was just kidding around)

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

I know, but wasn't sure everyone understood that.

Holland, OH(Zone 5b)

This has all been very informative. I have a packet of Papaver somniforum seeds sitting right here waiting for me to get off my duff and get them in the garden. I purchased them from eBay. I've been waiting to grow them for over 25 years, but had to wait until the town Police Chief, who's back yard shared a fence with my garden, moved out! The new folks who have moved in are nice, but they don't know an oak tree from a lilac bush. They'll be clueless. Finally, I get to see these plants up close and personal.

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Some Americans think that European people, especially the Dutch ones, approve the use of all kind of drugs.

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