Home RecipesDessert Yoghurt and strawberry dumplings with poppy seed custard

Yoghurt and strawberry dumplings with poppy seed custard

by paddock2pixel

Disclaimer: In December 2019, I was commissioned to develop a variety of recipes for Dairy Australia. This is one of them, highlighting the use of yoghurt. Styling and photography by me. Both the recipe and the photo is now property of Dairy Australia, however I was given permission to publish them on my website. © Dairy Australia. All rights reserved.

If you live in a different country to the country you grew up in, there are just some things you miss like crazy. Australia pretty much doesn’t have quark. In Germany, quark is one of the most common dairy products, and it happens to be my absolute favourite. So what do you do, when you can’t get it anywhere? You find the best alternative. I found that a thick Greek yoghurt is a decent alternative. Not quite the same taste, but it behaves very similarly in baking.

Another thing I’ve never seen in Australia are Knödel. They’re a dense type of dumpling, usually made from potatoes, and usually they are kind of neutral, eaten with meat and gravy. There is however a version that originates in Austria, the ‘Marillenknödel’. It’s slightly sweet, and filled with an apricot. My mum used to make these for us when we were kids, but filled with plums. I have very fond memories of the taste, quite dense, with the hot fruit in the middle, covered in breadcrumbs. Oh, I’m dreaming already…

So when I was faced with the challenge to come up with a yoghurt recipe, I immediately thought, well let’s see if we can make my favourite dumplings with yoghurt instead of quark. And it worked! They’re actually really light. When you make them, don’t be tempted to add more flour; the dough is incredibly wet, but workable when cold and when you’re handling it with wet hands. Adding flour will just make the dumplings really heavy.

There are other modifications to the traditional version. I’ve added coconut to the crumbs, because it goes so well with strawberries. And then there is the custard… Have you ever added yoghurt to custard (oh by the way, you HAVE to wait until the custard has cooled down to room temperature before you add it, otherwise it might split the sauce)? It reduces the sweetness and gives it this lovely tangy flavour that works so well with the dumplings. I think I’ll always add yoghurt to my custards from now on, it’s so delicious.

Ok, gotta go and make these now. Writing about them just doesn’t satisfy the taste buds! 🙂

Yoghurt and strawberry dumplings with poppy seed custard

Every country has their style of dumpling. This version has Australian roots, but while traditionally quark is used for the dough, I've replaced it with yoghurt. The custard also has yoghurt in it, so all up, dairy is the hero here! (Recipe written and photo taken for Dairy Australia)
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Resting time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 45 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Austrian
Keyword: custard, dumpling, poppy seeds, strawberry, yoghurt, yogurt
Servings: 12 dumplings



  • 70 g unsalted butter softened
  • 20 g castor sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 250 g Greek-style yoghurt full fat
  • 70-90 g plain flour
  • 100-120 g semolina
  • 12 small strawberries


  • 170 ml full cream milk
  • ½ vanilla bean
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 30 g castor sugar
  • 10 g poppy seeds
  • 30 g Greek-style yoghurt full fat


  • 50 g desiccated coconut
  • 40 g bread crumbs
  • 20 g brown sugar


  • In a large bowl, cream 60g butter and sugar, then incorporate egg and yoghurt. Add as much flour and semolina needed to form a pliable dough. The dough should still be very wet. Rest in the fridge for 30-60 minutes.
  • For the custard, bring milk and the scraped vanilla bean to the boil. In a small bowl, whisk egg yolks and sugar. Slowly pour the hot milk into the egg mix while whisking continuously. Pour back into the pan, add the poppy seeds, and gently cook until the custard thickens. Remove from the heat and let it cool to room temperature. Once cooled, stir in the yoghurt.
  • To make the crumbs, toast coconut on low heat until fragrant. Remove from the pan, then fry breadcrumbs in 10g butter until golden. Let cool for 5 minutes, then mix with brown sugar and toasted coconut.
  • Bring a large pot with salted water to the boil. Divide the dough into 12 pieces, then fully enclose each strawberry with a piece of dough, shaping round dumplings. Carefully drop them into the hot water and gently simmer for 10 minutes until they float to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon, then roll in the prepared crumb mixture. Serve with poppy seed custard.
  • Tip: To prevent the dough from sticking, wet your hands with cold water before shaping each dumpling.

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