Poppy Seed

Poppy Seed. The small, hard, round seed (q.v.) with a mild, pleasant nutlike flavor and an agreeable taste, obtained from Papaver somniferum, an annual herbaceous plant of the poppy family that is widely cultivated in Europe. It contains 50 to 60% of oil (q.v.), made up chiefly of linoleic and oleic acids (q.v.), and is used either whole as toppings (q.v.) for breads (q.v.), rolls (q.v.), coffee cakes (q.v.) and various pastries (q.v.), or ground into a smooth paste (q.v.) for various fillings (q.v.).