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Where is the best place to buy poppy seeds? I've heard that many sold in shops are not fresh, and consequently are bitter.

I live near a Whole Foods Market with what seems to be a high turnover in everything they sell. Is that a good option? Are there more reliable sources online?

Thank you so much.

asked by Mrs Beryl Patmore 4 months ago
11 answers 200 views
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added 4 months ago

I personally love the blue poppy seeds I got from Penzey's Spice.

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added 4 months ago

Forgot the link https://www.penzeys.com...

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added 4 months ago

When I get my poppy seeds (also from Penzey's) I keep them in the fridge.

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Nancy

Nancy is a trusted home cook.

added 4 months ago

For all herbs and spices, you want a place with frequent turnover.
Yes, seeds can go bitter or rancid, or loose some of their flavor if very old (years old).
Ask your nearby WF market about the turnover in their spice section, and act accordingly.
For other than Penzey's online orders, I know of nuts.com and kalustyan.com
Agree with Tiberia about cold storage of seeds (because of their high oil content). Fridge or freezer. When I have the space or a large volume of a seed and won't use it up quickly, I put them in the freezer.

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added 4 months ago

They tend to go rancid quickly. If you buy them in a market, after you purchase open it and give a sniff outside the store. If it smells rancid you can return them right away. You will know it smells off. I also find Penzy's always fresh for anything.

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added 4 months ago

This is curious because I know for a fact (I'm a garden editor) that bread-seed poppies or the poppy seeds found in your spice cabinet are, in fact, Papaver somniferum, or opium poppy seeds that remain viable for years, perhaps even decades. Don't toss those old poppy seeds out in the garbage, scatter them. Since they need to be stratisfied (chilled to simulate winter conditions), toss them on top of a late season snowfall right where you want them to grow. I promise, you'll have your own home-grown poppies blooming next spring...and seeds to harvest and use in cooking once the seedheads have ripened.

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added 3 months ago

No way! I've always read that they're heated/sterilized before being sold! That is scandalous and I'm going to try this now.....

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pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added 3 months ago

And also be aware that if you have to pass a drug test for work or whatever the seeds can cause you to test positive for opiates.

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added 3 months ago

Thank you, everyone, for the helpful advice.

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added 3 months ago

Spice House another family member to Penzeys and less pricey
Just type spice house.com

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added 3 months ago

Always go to the Spice House over Penzeys. You'll save money and support a small, delightful business.