On my last trip to Berkeley Bowl as I was stocking up on dried chick peas for hummus, I decided to get a large bag of poppy seeds as well. As I have the tendency to do when faced with a bulk bin, I bought way more than I would need to sprinkle on my challah. My co-workers have been politely requesting more cookies since the day I introduced them to my crack-like peanut-butter cookies. I needed a post for the blog, I already had the oven heated from roasting pumpkin earlier in the day, and I had vague memories of the existence of Jewish poppy-seed cookie recipes. A quick perusal of the internet and my cookbooks proved I was indeed correct. Mohn (Poppy Seed) cookies originated in Germany or Poland depending on the source you consult and they are frequently served with coffee or tea. This version is only mildly sweet and has a lovely contrasting texture of the soft dough and crunchy poppy seeds. The recipes varied from softer drop cookies to crisp rolled and cut cookies. Unfortunately, almost all of them were parve and called for oil. There is pretty much nothing I dislike more than parve cookies, so I decided to substitute the oil for butter, and to get the dough to the right consistency, (and for added flavor) I added lemon juice and zest.
And while they were nowhere near as popular as my crack-cookies they were gone before I left the office for the day, so it seemed people liked them.
This cookie is a softer drop dough version and if you want to make them parve you can substitute the butter for oil and omit the lemon juice.
Mohn (poppy seed) Cookies
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/3 cup poppy seeds
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1/2 cup butter
- zest and juice from 1 lemon
- Mix flour, baking powder, poppy seed and salt in a bowl and set aside.
- In a lager bowl or stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until smooth.
- Mix zest and lemon juice into butter and sugar mixture
- Add the dry ingredient to the butter and sugar and mix until a thick batter is formed.
- Roll about a teaspoon full of dough into a ball and drop onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Dip bottom of glass or other flat bottomed tool in sugar and press each cookie down.
- Bake at 400 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, or until edges are browned.