Poppy seed bread pudding is a very popular dessert in Hungary. Originally a Christmas dessert in the Central European region (Poland: Makówki, German: Mohnpielen), iin the last decades it became an everyday food item that you can find in many restaurants.
As poppy seed bread pudding is very easy to prepare – similarly to the traditional bread pudding – it is frequently served in Hungarian homes, either as a dessert or a main dinner course.
The Bread in a Hungarian Poppy Seed Bread Pudding
Poppy seed bread pudding in Hungary is made of day-old semi-sweet rolls called kifli. Kifli is similar to German Kipferl and very popular in Hungary. You can find it in almost every bakery or grocery store.
But if you cannot buy kifli and want to prepare poppy seed bread pudding, just use regular or sweet white bread that you would use for your traditional bread pudding.
Poppy Seed Bread Pudding Recipe
The ingredients used in this recipe make poppy seed bread pudding for 4 people in a 6 X 12 inch (16 x 30 cm) baking pan.
You’ll need ground poppy seed for this recipe, which is not a common ingredient outside Hungary. If you can’t find it at your local grocery store, just buy regular poppy seed and grind it in a coffee grinder. Here is one ground poppy seed I found on Amazon.
For the best results, use stale, day-old bread or kifli.
- Preheat oven to 395° F (200° C)
- Cut 1/2 inch (1 cm) kifli rings, or cut 1 X 1 inch (2.5 x 2.5 cm) squares if using bread. Put it in a 6 X 12 inch (16 x 30 cm) baking pan.
- Heat milk, cream, butter, honey and vanilla in a saucepan, but don’t bring it to a boil, just to let them melt together. If using a vanilla pod, don’t forget to cut it and take out the seeds.
- Mix ground poppy seed and powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar) in a bowl.
- Pour the milk and cream mixture over the sliced bread. Mix carefully, not breaking the slices.
- Sprinkle bread slices with the poppy seed mixture. Fold the whole pudding very carefully with a spatula so all parts become poppy seedy and sugary.
- Bake for 20 minutes, until it becomes crunchy at the top but still soft in the middle.
- Serve your poppy seed bread pudding fresh and warm on its own, or with whipped cream or vanilla custard.
Hungarian name: Mákos guba