Although rose and poppy seed was not my favorite of the 2008 flavor pairings, I couldn't help but think it would make for a great cupcake. So I set out to find a delicious poppy seed cake, and a nice rose-infused frosting. The result was a subtle floral flavor, that really took me by surprise. I figured that the rose and poppy seed would complement one another, but I didn't expect them to be quite so delicious. If you're interested in trying it yourself, get the recipe, just read more.

Note: Rose flower water can be found at specialty grocery stores, places like BevMo, natural food stores, and possibly the "ethnic" aisle at your local grocery store.

I frosted these cupcakes with rose-flavored cream cheese frosting. I think they would also work well with whipped cream infused rose frosting. For garnish, I rolled raspberries in rose petal sugar — a gift from a friend, she found it at a specialty market — however you could garnish with plain raspberries, or a few poppy seeds.

Also, be careful when baking, mine were a little dry on the inside. The batter was really thick, I would probably use more yogurt next time, and bake for a shorter time period.

Poppy Seed Yogurt Cupcakes
From Stella Zedman

Makes 12 cupcakes

1/2 cup (125 mL) plain yogurt
1/4cup (50 mL) poppy seeds
1/2 cup (125 mL) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (125 mL) butter, softened
2 eggs
1-1/4 cups (300 mL) all purpose flour
1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder
1/2 tsp. (2 mL) baking soda

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt and the poppy seeds. Let this mixture soak while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
  3. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, beat together the sugar, butter and eggs until thick and creamy — about 5 or 6 minutes.
    This wasn't exactly "thick and creamy" but it worked anyways.This wasn't exactly "thick and creamy" but it worked anyways.
  4. In another bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture, in 2 or 3 additions, alternately with the poppy seed mixture. Beat just until smooth.
  5. Spoon into the cupcake liners, filling them no more than 2/3 full -- there should be just enough for 12 cupcakes. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes -- until the cupcakes are just beginning to brown and a toothpick poked into the middle comes out clean.
  6. Remove from oven and let cupcakes cool on a rack.
  7. When completely cool, frost with your favourite frosting [I used the rose water frosting recipe below.] — it goes well with either chocolate or white frosting.

Rose Water Frosting
From Martha Stewart

Makes 1/2 cup — enough to fully coat 6-8 cupcakes.

4 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup sifted confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons rose water
1 1/2 teaspoons milk, plus more if needed
Gel-paste food coloring [I used 3 drops of liquid red food coloring to achieve the color shown.]

  1. In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese and the sugar with a wooden spoon until the mixture is smooth. Add the rose water and the milk, and continue to beat the mixture until it is smooth. Tint the frosting, and use it immediately.