This gluten-free poppy seed roll is a delicious treat. It’s made with a yeasted whole-grain dough and a rich butter and poppy seed filling. Unlike most GF treats, it stays fresh for up to a week!
This is based on a recipe that Max found in one of our favorite cookbooks. Over time, I adapted into a gluten-free recipe and adjusted the filling to suit our taste. But I only decided to formally write down the recipe after his fourth time making it! He loves it that much.
One of the best things about this recipe is that it doesn’t go stale! As any GF person knows, most gluten-free baking has a pretty short best-before date.
I think it’s the combination of a really moist, flavorful filling and a sweet buttery dough that helps this pastry stay fresh. We usually make this roll, to serve as our mid-morning snack for a whole week. (It fits into my kids’ lunch containers… and is perfect next to my cup of tea).
Gluten-free baking tips
Gluten-free baking is always a bit trickier than regular baking. It just doesn’t have the structure provided by gluten.
Luckily, this recipe is pretty robust. I’ve tested it with GF oat flour and white rice flour. It will probably work with your favorite GF flour. Here are a few tips if you’re struggling to get the dough into a good consistency.
- The dough needs to be quite stiff (like gingerbread cookie dough). If it seems too soft after you’ve added all the ingredients, you can add a bit more flour. However, the dough needs to rise, which gives the flour time to hydrate. So it will be drier after the initial rising time.
- GF dough is fragile. I recommend rolling it out on parchment or a pastry mat. Then you can pick up the pastry mat to help you form the roll. It can also act like a sling to help you transfer the roll to your baking sheet.
- 1/2 cup of butter, melted
- 1/4 cup of milk
- 2 Tbsp of brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp of yeast
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole-grain gluten-free flour
- 1/2 cup tapioca starch
- 2 tsp xanthan gum
Poppy Seed Filling
- 1 cup poppy seeds
- 1/2 cup of hot milk
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup of sugar (to taste)
- 1/4 cup of softened butter
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
To make the dough
- Mix the milk and butter in a large bowl. Stir in the sugar and yeast, and leave the yeast to bloom while you set up the poppy seeds to soak (about 5 minutes).
- Mix the egg and vanilla extract into the bloomed yeast. Add in the flour, starch, and xanthan gum. It will be very thick and sticky. Cover with a damp tea towel and set it aside to rise for 1 to 2 hours.
To make the filling
- Soak the poppy seeds in hot milk for 1 to 2 hours.
- Strain the poppy seeds through a fine sieve, then place them in a blender with the sugar. Pulse to grind the poppy seeds. If you don't have a high-quality blender, use a mortar and pestle instead. (Max always drinks the poppy seed milk... which might be why he likes making this so much!)
- Mix in the softened butter, nuts, and vanilla extract.
To form the roll
- Preheat the oven to 350 F (180 C). Roll the dough out on a non-stick mat or piece of parchment paper. It will be quite dry and slightly crumbly. If it's sticky sprinkle the surface of the rolling mat with flour to keep it from sticking. You want the dough to be a rectangle about 1/4 inch (5 mm) thick.
- Spread the poppy seed mixture on the dough, leaving a small 1/2 inch (1 cm) border. Carefully roll the dough as tightly as you can, using the rolling mat or parchment to help you. Transfer the roll to a greased baking sheet then brush it with the beaten egg.
- Bake for 45 minutes until the roll is cooked through and browning. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
- I like gluten-free oat flour for most of my baking. It is stickier and moister than buckwheat or rice. However, feel free to use your favorite whole-grain flour.
- I haven't tested this with other GF starches. If you try corn starch or potato starch, please let me know how it worked!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 266Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 47mgSodium: 108mgCarbohydrates: 21gFiber: 3gSugar: 5gProtein: 5g
This is for 1/12 slice of poppy seed roll, using GF oat flour.