Poppy Seed Cookies with Plum Filling

Two weeks ago I visited my crafting friend to make a Christmas edition of “spa products” that we made earlier in the year. We had a coffee break and she brought out Christmas cookies – I was quite speechless as she’d already made seven kinds whereas I had made nothing yet. Nada. Niente. Rien.

I have meanwhile made hazelnut macaroons, sour cream cookies and cinnamon stars but they’re all gone already; I snaffled the former two with a cup of tea every evening and gave away most of my cinnamon stars.

So this weekend I’ve had a baking marathon. I made more of all the above, and then I was able to get the recipe for my friend’s poppy seed cookies with plum filling.

That recipe is actually from a German supermarket’s free magazine, procured through another friend. I’ve never used poppy seeds in anything but you can buy a poppy seed baking mix here which is a wet filling.

I’ve also never used plum filling, which in this case was plum butter. I almost grabbed plum jam off the shelf at the supermarket but then saw there was plum butter. I cautiously tasted it at home, and I was very surprised – it’s absolutely lovely, velvety and smooth, and very tasty. I’ll definitely find a purpose for the rest of the jar.

The recipe asked for spelt wholegrain flour, which I replaced with emmer flour – simply because I thought I had spelt flour but found out on my return from the supermarket that I didn’t. My guess is that you can substitute with any wholegrain flour.

What’s important here is that the butter is cold, straight from the fridge. After refrigerating the dough portions for an hour, take out only the one you’ll be working with, then the next once you’re done. If the dough isn’t cool enough, it’ll quickly get floppy and sticky.

The recipe also says to combine the cutouts from the dough to make more cookies, but I decided to just bake them as they were so I had some mini cookies, also filled with plum butter.

These cookies are firm (not hard, though) after baking, but when stored in a cookie tin they’ll soften a little after a few days, and I actually like the soft version.

I love the combination of the moist poppy seed mix and the plum butter, it’s absolutely perfect. This recipe will make it onto my annual Xmas baking list, that’s for certain.

Poppy Seed Cookies With Plum Filling

  • Servings: makes approx. 30 cookies
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Dough
175 g unsalted butter
100 g wet poppy seed mix
75 g raw cane sugar
1 egg
1 pinch salt
250 g spelt wholegrain flour (alternatively emmer or any wholegrain flour)

Filling
plum butter

Decorating
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp icing sugar

Cut the cold butter into cubes. Mix together with the other dough ingredients to form a smooth dough. Divide the dough into 3 portions, cover in clingfilm and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 180°C / 350°F (non-fan). Prepare 2 baking sheets, lining them with baking paper.

Roll out first dough portion on a floured surface, about 4 mm thin. Use a cookie cutter of your choice to cut the dough, then cut out the middle of half the cookies with a smaller cutter. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets and bake – one after the other – on the middle shelf for approx. 12 minutes. After baking, let them cook on a cake rack.

You can either use the cutout dough to make more cookies, or you can just bake it in the shape you cut them out in [I did the latter.]

Once the cookies have cooled, spread plum butter on the whole halves, then cover each with a cut one. Mix cinnamon and icing sugar together and dust the cookies. Store in a cookie tin.

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