Dessert Wiki

Prep Time:

Cook time:

Serves: 10-12


German poppy seed gugelhupf. The aromatic flavor will have your guests guessing. Could it be cardamom, five spice powder, or something even more exotic? They are surprised to learn the source is nothing more than fresh, ground poppy seeds.

Poppy seeds are usually ground before use to crack their tough hulls, which releases their flavor and moisture. Use an electric coffee grinder or blender. Grind the seeds in 1/4 cup batches until they look smaller than whole seeds and begin to clump together. A blender takes longer than a grinder, about 1 minute and be sure to stop the blender occasionally to loosen the ground seeds that collect around the blade.

The cake is best the day it is made. Cover leftovers tightly in plastic wrap and store at room temperature. To refresh, heat slices in a toaster oven.



  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350°F. Using a cylinder shaped pastry brush, butter the inside of a 9 to 9½ inch Gugelhupf mold (Bundt pan or fluted cake pan). Coat with flour, tapping out the excess.
  2. Beat the butter in a medium bowl using a handheld electric mixer on high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. On low speed, beat in the confectioners’ sugar. Return the speed to high and beat until the mixture is very pale and light in texture, about 3 minutes. One at a time, beat in the eggs, then the lemon zest.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together into a bowl, and stir in the ground poppy seeds. Mix the milk, rum, and vanilla in a glass measuring cup. Stir in half of the flour, then half of the milk, then repeat. Spread evenly in the pan.
  4. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Invert onto the rack to unmold and cool completely.