Poppy seeds are not only great decoration to sprinkle over bread,they also make excellent puddings. Poppy seed filled pastries and cakes are traditional „sweets” served for Christmas in Eastern countries and they are famous for a very good reason- they are super delicious.The secret lies in preparation of the seeds-blanched in hot water or milk,minced and mix with dry fruit and nuts taste nothing like the poppy seeds you might know.
The poppy seed paste is perfect for any yeast dough.It can be rolled and baked as a log or cut into pieces to achieve swirly buns.These rolls are a combination of two timeless classics – challah and Polish Christmas cake and it’s probably the best combination of two classics ever invented! 🙂
FOR 10-12 BUNS
15 g fresh yeast or 6 g instant (I highly recommend fresh!), room temperature
125 ml tepid water
2 egg yolks, room temperature
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 tbsp clear honey
pinch of salt
240 g white bread flour
POPPY SEED FILLING:
125g poppy seeds (look for blue poppy seeds)
1 tablespoon ground almonds
40-50 ml clear honey
1 tablespoon butter,soft
orange peel(from one,small,organic,unwaxed orange)
seeds from 1 vanilla pod
PLUS:1 egg for brushing
1. In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast over barely warm water. Beat in oil,egg yolks,honey and salt.Add the flour one cup at a time, beating after each addition, graduating to kneading with hands as dough thickens. Knead until smooth and elastic and no longer sticky, adding flour as needed. Cover with a clean cloth and let rise for 1 1/2 hours or until dough has doubled in bulk.
2.In a meantime,boil water in a kettle.Place poppy seeds in a bowl and cover them with hot water,stir and leave until water cools down.Poppy seeds will absorb some water, and should look like wet sand :).Place poppy seeds on a sieve and let them drain.Mince poppy seeds using a meat mincer twice(there should be some white „flesh” visible) or place in a food processor and wizz to a smooth paste.Add the rest of the ingredients and mix.
3. Punch down the risen dough and turn out onto floured board.Roll it out to a rectangle 25×30 cm.Spread the filling over it,leaving about 1cm/0.5 inch edges around.Roll it starting from the shorter edge.Cut into pieces with string or knife and arrange them on a tray lined with a baking paper.Let it „rise” for around 1 hour.
4.Preheat oven to 190 C/Fan 170 C/Gas 5
5. Beat an egg and brush over each bun before you put it in the oven
6. Bake for about 30-35 minutes.Cool on a rack before serving.