Grandma’s Poppy Seed Crescents

Mohn Moons

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes about

    7 dozen


Appears in

I reconstructed this recipe from one that my grandmother had copied in a black-and-white-flecked composition book in the 1920s. Because they’re pareve (neutral—containing no butter), they can be served with either meat or dairy meals by those who keep kosher. They’re easy to make and not too sweet.


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 scant cup sugar
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • ½ cup ( ounces) poppy seeds


  1. Sift the flour with the baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour. Add the sugar, oil, eggs and poppy seeds to the well. With an electric mixer, mix until the dough is well blended. At this point, the dough may look slightly grayish—that’s OK.
  2. Place the dough on a floured sheet of plastic wrap, sprinkle with a little flour, and wrap. Chill until quite firm, at least 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease 3 baking sheets; set aside. Divide the dough into 4 portions. Place 1 portion on a lightly floured work surface; refrigerate the remaining dough. Roll out the dough ⅜ inch thick. Cut out 2- to 2½-inch crescents with a floured cookie cutter. (You can find crescent-shape cutters in cookware stores; otherwise, form crescents by making 2 cuts with one side of a round biscuit cutter or a glass—the way my grandmother used to do it.) Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, spacing them about ½ inch apart. Repeat with the remaining dough, rerolling any scraps, too.
  4. Bake the cookies until the edges and bottoms are lightly golden, 15 to 17 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. These cookies keep very well; store in an airtight container.