kuchen, part 1 – poppyseed filling

when easter rolls around, it’s the tradition in the wallace (derry [fuchs {schleppenbach<etc.>}]) household to churn out some boehma/bohema/behma/whateverkuchen. i actually tried googling it this year under many spelling variations to see if anyone else out there makes these kolache-type breads under that name. nothing. my favorite b-kuchen filling is poppyseed, and the last few years i’ve been dietarily lenient with the easter treat…but no more.

this year marks the 3rd anniversary of avoiding corn syrup, and as such, i thought it was fitting to finally give homemade poppyseed filling a go. (the FIRST ingredient in solo poppyseed filling is, ahem, corn syrup.)

after much googling, the answer lay in making a custard and mixing in ground poppyseeds. easy peasy! i went to the food co-op where they sold the seed in bulk and paid $3 for a pound (srsly a steal – would have paid $3 for a little jar of mccormick in the grocery store…food co-ops are awesome).

time to grind! every recipe said to use a coffee grinder – even a food processor won’t get the seed small enough. grind up 8 ounces of poppyseed.

grindok, so i was over .3 oz.

I tried to get a closeup to show you the difference between the whole seed andΒ groundΒ seed. it certainly smelled good when i dumped out the ground seed!groundTime to start the custard.

In a pot, combine:
1 c. milk or cream (of COURSE i used cream!!)
1/4 c. butter
3/4 c. sugar (edit: after actually using the filling in a baked good, i would increase this to at least 1 cup, 1.25 if you like it really sweet)
pinch salt


cook that until the butter is melted, sugar dissolved and the milk is a little frothy (but don’t boil – cook over medium-low).

beat 2 eggs in a bowl, then temper those bad boys – slowly drizzle in half the hot liquid from the pot while you whisk like a madwoman so the eggs don’t cook. after half is in the eggs, dump the whole shebang back in the pot.

eggstempered eggs

cook until it’s thick like you’re cooking pudding. then time to stir in the poppyseed.

cook2those little clumps are from where it stuck under the grinder blades.

stir that all up then cook over low for a couple more minutes to make sure it’s nice and thickened.

doneI added some honey and lemon juice still, just to make it taste like it traditionally does. i tasted a little bit, and you wouldn’t think it was pudding mixed with it – the poppyseed flavor is so overwhelming, that you would think it’s just a classier brand of solo filling. it’s actually a lot more earthy tasting – really pulls out the poppyseed flavor because it’s freshly ground.

part two to come tomorrow when i bust out my dough hook!

ETA: thought it was important to point out that this took less than 20 minutes to do. the only out-of-the-way thing you’d have to do is find some bulk poppyseed.


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