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old czech makový závin poppyseed roll recipe

Poppy Seed Roll – Czech Makový závin

Are you a fan of poppy seeds? If the answer is yes, then I have an excellent recipe for Old Bohemian poppyseed roll here that will delight everyone who tastes it!
Course Dessert, Sweet Bread, Sweet Pastry
Cuisine Czech
Keyword Czech recipes, poppyseed recipes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Rising Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 2 loaves
Calories 2412kcal


Poppyseed filling:

  • 2 ½ cup ground poppy seeds (225 g)
  • 1 cup milk (240 ml)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar (120 g)
  • cup raisins (50 g)
  • 2 Tablespoons jam
  • 2 Tablespoons spiced rum optional

Yeast dough:

  • 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour (490 g) plus some for dusting the worktop
  • ¾ cup milk (180 ml) warm
  • cup granulated sugar (65 g)
  • ½ stick unsalted butter (55 g)
  • ¾ Tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 egg
  • pinch of salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla paste or vanilla essence (optional)


Poppyseed filling:

  • Put the ground poppy seeds in a saucepan, pour in the milk. Bring to the boil, turn down the heat to a minimum and cook for 10 minutes while stirring.
  • Remove from the stove, stir in the sugar, jam, and raisins. Transfer to a bowl, let it cool completely. Pour in the rum and stir.

Yeast dough:

  • Heat the milk to warm but not hot. Add the butter, let it melt in the milk. Add the egg and beat in the mixture with a fork.
  • Sift the flour, sugar, and a pinch of salt into a large bowl. Add the vanilla paste. Pour in the prepared mixture of milk, butter, and egg.
  • Stir in the dry yeast.
  • Work everything into a smooth dough. I use only my hands, not a kitchen mixer. I start with a fork to incorporate the wet ingredients into the dry ones. Then I dump everything on the countertop and knead the dough with my hands. Please do not underestimate the kneading itself; it takes about 5 minutes.
  • Cover the dough in the bowl with a clean tea towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume. This takes about an hour.
  • Divide the dough into two equal parts. Lightly dust the work surface with flour. Roll out one piece of the dough roughly into a rectangle so that the longer part is no longer than the baking sheet. I baked the poppyseed roll on a 16x14 inch baking sheet and rolled out the dough to about 14x12 inches.
  • Spread the rolled-out dough with the cooled poppy seed filling, leaving an uncovered strip about 1 inch wide around the perimeter.
  • Beat one egg in a bowl and brush the edges of the dough. This step will help prevent the poppy seed filling from oozing out of the roll when baking.
  • Carefully roll up the poppyseed roll. Squeeze both ends lightly and fold them down.
  • Transfer the strudel to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Prepare the second roll in the same way.
  • Bake the roll in a preheated oven at 340°F (170 °C) for about 40 minutes until the surface is golden brown.


  1. Makes 2 poppyseed loaves.
  2. SERVING: Let the roll cool, dust with icing sugar, and slice it into pieces about 1 and ½ inches wide
  3. First, prepare the poppyseed filling so that it has time to cool. The yeast dough should always be filled with room temperature warmed stuffing; meaning: not hot or too cold, e.g., taken out of the fridge.
  4. In the Czech Republic, you can buy poppyseeds already ground. If you purchase whole poppyseeds, grind them quickly in a clean coffee grinder or food processor.
  5. I used a 14x16 inches baking pan to bake this roll.


Calories: 2412kcal | Carbohydrates: 352g | Protein: 58g | Fat: 87g | Saturated Fat: 25g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 38g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 175mg | Sodium: 183mg | Potassium: 1704mg | Fiber: 33g | Sugar: 118g | Vitamin A: 1187IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 2107mg | Iron: 24mg