Challah is one of my favorite foods. And, in honor of the New Year, I would like to share this recipe with you.
Challah is no joke. It takes a long time and a lot of work to prep. Make sure you are ready for it. The outcome will be worth the work.
Use this challah to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or french toast. It is perfect!
Or impress all your Jewish friends by bringing a loaf to a Rosh Hashana party!
Homemade Challah, adapted from smitten kitchen
- 1 packages active dry yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp plus 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for greasing the bowl
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose or wheat flour (or a mix of the two)
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 1/2 tsp sugar in 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water (at 105-110F).
Whisk oil into yeast, then beat in 2 eggs, one at a time, with remaining sugar and salt. Gradually add flour. When dough holds together, it is ready for kneading.
Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth. Clean out bowl and grease it, then return dough to bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until almost doubled in size. Punch down dough, cover and let rise again in a warm place for another half-hour.
To make a 6-braid challah, either straight or circular, take the dough and form it into 6 balls. With your hands, roll each ball into a strand about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide. Place the 6 in a row, parallel to one another. Pinch the tops of the strands together. Move the outside right strand over 2 strands. Then take the second strand from the left and move it to the far right. Take the outside left strand and move it over 2. Move second strand from the right over to the far left. Start over with the outside right strand. Continue this until all strands are braided. For a straight loaf, tuck ends underneath. For a circular loaf, twist into a circle, pinching ends together. Place braided loaf on a greased cookie sheet.
Beat remaining egg and brush it on the loaf. Let rise another hour. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush loaves again.
Bake in middle of oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden.
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