Mohnstriezel -- Poppy Seed Cake

Recipe by Sackville
READY IN: 4hrs
YIELD: 2 cakes




  • Place the poppy seeds for the filling in a bowl, cover with boiling water and soak for three hours.
  • Pour the lukewarm water into a small bowl and sprinkle the yeast and 1/2 teaspoon sugar on top.
  • Leave for a few minutes until frothy.
  • Transfer the yeast to a large bowl.
  • Dissolve the 1/2 cup sugar in the milk and then stir the milk into the yeast.
  • Beat in three cups of the flour about 1/4 cup at a time.
  • Beat in the eggs one by one and then the butter, which should be broken into bits.
  • Beat until the dough can be gathered into a ball.
  • Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead in the remaining cup of flour a few tablespoons at a time.
  • The dough will be stiff and quite dry.
  • Shape it into a rough ball, place it in a mixing bowl and add enough cold water to cover the dough by several inches.
  • In 10-15 minutes the top of the dough should rise above the surface of the water.
  • Remove the dough from the water and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Return to a floured board and knead again for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
  • Shape into a ball and place in a lightly buttered bowl.
  • Cover and let rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes or until doubled.
  • Meanwhile, drain the poppy seeds and spread them out on paper towels to dry.
  • Then pulverize them in an electric blender or with a mortar and pestle.
  • Combine the seeds with the almonds, raisin and lemon peel in a large bowl.
  • In a heavy saucepan, bring 3/4 cup of the milk and the sugar to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low and whisk in the 2 tbsp flour in the remaining 1/4 cup of milk.
  • Slowly beat the flour and milk mixture into the simmering milk.
  • Bring to a boil again, whisking constantly until the mixture is thick and smooth.
  • Pour over the poppy seed mixture and stir well, then beat in the egg yolk.
  • Separately, beat the egg white until it forms peaks.
  • Fold into the poppy-seed filling.
  • Grease the bottom and sides of two 5 x 10 x 2-1/2 inch loaf pans with the soft butter and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 375 F.
  • When the dough has risen, punch it down and divide in half.
  • Roll each half into a rectangle about 10 x 15 inches and 1/4 inch thick.
  • Spread the filling evenly over the rectangles to within 1/2 inch of their edges.
  • Dribble 4 tbsp of melted butter over each and then shape them by rolling each 10 inch side into the centre, jelly-roll fashion.
  • Hold both sides together and flip so the seam is on the bottom when the cake is set in its pan.
  • Brush the tops with the egg and cream mixture and bake on a middle oven shelf for 1 hour or until the cakes are golden brown and crusty.
  • Cool in the pans for about five minutes, then turn onto a cake rack.
  • Cool completely before serving.