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My Challah Recipe

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Here is the challah recipe for the plain challah, but there are many different challahs you can bake.

  • 1 ¾ cups of warm water (I use 2 cups; it's fluffier then)
  • 2 tablespoon quick rise yeast
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs (+ 1 more egg to brush the challah)
  • 6-7 cups flour
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Prepare the warm water by mixing hot boiled water and cold water, and make it more on the very warm side. For all challah dough, it is best if you start by pouring the yeast into the warm water. Without mixing, let mixture sit for a few minutes until it bubbles.  Then mix in the sugar, eggs, vegetable oil, and salt. Add the flour last, 1 cup at a time (make sure you measure exactly 1 cup at a time).  Slowly add flour, 1 cup at a time, mixing as you go.  I usually mix with a fork until 5 cups are in, then I start kneading with my hands. Stop at 6 cups. You must have at least 6 cups of flour, then if you still need more flour add another half a cup; you should not add more than 7 cups of flour.

When reaching a nice consistency, knead dough for 5-10 minutes so you get it evenly mixed. Allow dough to rise, covered (I usually cover with a damp cloth napkin), for 2-3 hours. Braid or shape (don’t use a rolling pin, use your hands only; I use a knife to cut the dough into 6 equal parts, then prepare 6 equal rolls with my hands to make 2 challahs, 3 rolls each) as desired.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Once you braid the challah, you prepare one egg mixture (just like for an omelette) to brush the challah with the egg mixture.  Prepare an aluminum tray or a cookie sheet and put parchment paper on top. Place braided challah on it and place it in the oven. Bake for ½ hour to 40 minutes, until bottom sounds hollow when tapped. Once it's golden on top (about 10 minutes before it's done) but not baked yet, I cover with aluminum foil until it's done.

I usually make 2 small challahs in addition on a stick for the boys shaped differently; they love getting their own mini challahJ!

Enjoy and Shabbat Shalom!

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