🇭🇺 Hungary: Bejgli

Walnut and poppy seed rolls (“bejgli”) are classic, traditional Christmas desserts in Hungary. We love them with lots of filling, and the paper-thin pastry melts in your mouth. You need some experience to make it, but it’s well worth worth the try. Sometimes the “bejgli” cracks open during baking, but no matter – to this we say: “Never mind, we’ll eat it with a spoon!” (The bejgli cracks if there is too much filling, or if the filling is too moist ). If this happens, you can push back the sides of the hot rolls (with hands or a spatula) and the crack will close!

“In Hungary, when close relatives are finally together once again for the Holidays and able to enjoy each other’s company, they listen to traditional Christmas folk music and have dinner. There is one thing in particular, however, that helps make such occasions so special. On the table, there is always a bejgli. Indeed, no Christmas is complete without this traditional, festive pastry. This age-old custom can be traced back to Hungarian folk traditions.

Nowadays, you may find different versions with marzipan, chestnuts, pumpkin, or even white chocolate and coconut. Sticking to the ‘original’, we bring you a recipe for bejgli with walnut and poppy seed.

Merry Christmas and a Happy Festive Season to all! Enjoy baking!”

– SZABOLCS TAKACS, AMBASSADOR OF HUNGARY

🇭🇺 Hungary: Bejgli

Servings 2 rolls
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 40 mins

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 0.6 lbs All purpose flour (280 g)
  • 2.6 oz Cold butter (75 g)
  • 1.7 oz Rendered lard (50 g)
  • 1 oz Confectioners' sugar (30 g)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 0.5 oz Fresh yeast (15 g)
  • 1 Egg yolk
  • 1.6 fl oz Lukewarm water (50 ml)
  • 1 Egg separated, for brushing

For the poppy seed filling

  • 5.3 oz Ground poppy seed (150 g)
  • 1 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1 packet Vanilla sugar
  • Grated zest and juice of ½ orange

For the walnut filling

  • 5.3 oz Ground walnut (150 g)
  • 1 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1 packet Vanilla sugar
  • Grated zest of ½ lemon save 2 Tbsp of juice

For the combined filling

  • 3.2 fl oz Milk (100 ml)
  • 1 Tbsp Honey
  • 3.4 oz Sugar
  • 6 Raisins soaked in rum (optional)

Instructions

  • In a bowl combine the yeast, egg yolk and lukewarm milk. Stir until smooth.
  • Sift the flour into a large bowl, add the cold butter, lard, confectioners' sugar and a pinch of salt.
  • Crumble everything together then pour in the egg mixture. Knead until you have a smooth dough which comes off the bowl and your hand with ease.
  • Cut the dough into two equal parts, cover with cling film and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Meanwhile, make the fillings:
  • Mix the ground poppy seeds with the vanilla sugar, ground cinnamon, grated zest and juice of half orange. Mix the ground walnut with the vanilla sugar, ground cinnamon and grated zest and juice of half lemon.
  • Bring the milk into a low boil, add the sugar and the honey and stir until dissolved.
  • Pour half of this milk-mixture into the walnut and the other half into the poppyseed mix. (now, you can add the soaked raisins if you like). Stir the fillings well.
  • Take the dough out from the fridge.
  • Get one dough-ball then form a rectangle with your hand. Roll it out into an even, thin sheet which is about 8×12" size. (You can measure it with a pre-cut baking parchment).
  • Spoon the walnut mixture onto the pastry sheet, then spread it evenly, leaving out 1cm of the pastry on all sides.
  • Fold the sorter sides of the pastry over the filling. Fold over one of the longer sides, then carefully roll it up. (be sure that the other side of the pastry is on the bottom when it's rolled up).
  • Gently place it onto a baking pan (covered with baking parchment).
  • Do the same with the second dough and the poppy seed filling.
  • Prick some holes with a fork into the rolls (to let the steam escape during baking).
  • Brush the rolls with beaten egg yolk, then let them dry.
  • Brush the rolls with egg whites, then let them dry again.
  • Put them into the preheated oven and bake on 180C (350F) for 25-30 minutes.
  • When it's nice and golden brown, take them out and let them cool completely.
  • Slice them (not too thinly) and serve.
  • ENJOY!

Video

Did you make this recipe? Post a pic with #EUHolidayCookbook and let us know how it went!

Close
Created by the European Union Delegation to the United States © Copyright 2020. All rights reserved.