Challah Bread

Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or both, this delicious bread is the perfect holiday treat

by - Posted on Oct 15, 2020

Freshly baked challah bread

The golden-brown braids of a challah loaf make this bread distinctive, but instead of serving it plain. I like to add a twist of my own.

Sometimes I sprinkle poppy seeds on one side and sesame seeds on the other in what I call a black-and-white. Or I decorate the top with a few chocolate chips. Fresh out of the oven, challah is the perfect wintertime nosh and makes any holiday sweeter.

Ingredients

Bread
2 packages active dry yeast
1 tsp. honey
½ c. warm water
½ c. vegetable oil, plus more for coating and baking
½ c. sugar
1 ½ c. cold water
3 eggs
1 tsp. salt
Seeds or chocolate chips (optional)

Egg Wash
1 egg
2 tsp. water


Preparation

1. In a small bowl combine yeast with honey and warm water. Set aside for 7 to 10 minutes until yeast becomes foamy.

2. In a large bowl mix together oil and sugar. Add cold water. Add eggs one at a time. Add dissolved yeast mix ture and whisk together. Add salt.

3. Add first cup of flour and mix well. Continue adding fl our 1 cup at a time until dough leaves sides of bowl. Use your hands to mix if it gets too diffi cult with the spoon. The dough should become smooth and shiny. Knead by hand for 10 minutes.

4. Oil the large bowl and place dough (in a ball) inside, turning to coat. Cover with damp towel. Let rise for at least 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.

5. Punch down dough and knead for 2 to 3 minutes. Break dough into 9 pieces; roll each into a long rope. Braid 3 ropes to make one loaf. Repeat.

6. Once the loaves are braided, close all seams by pressing ends to gether firmly, or the braiding will come apart during baking. Beat egg with water and brush egg wash on top of each loaf. Add seeds or chocolate chips, if desired.

7. Oil the large bowl and place dough (in a ball) inside, turning to coat. Cover with damp towel. Let rise for at least 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.

8. Place loaves on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 375° for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool until warm.

Makes 3 loaves.

Nutritional Information (serving size=1 slice, 12 slices per loaf):  Calories: 150; Fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 20mg; Sodium: 75mg; Total Carbohydrates: 24g; Dietary Fiber: 0g; Sugars: 2g; Protein: 4g.

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