The secrets to good challah are simple: Use two coats of egg wash to get that laquer-like crust and  don’t overbake it. 
Time: about 1 hour, plus 2 1/2 hours’ rising
Yield: 2 loaves


1 1/2 packages active dry yeast (1 1/2 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon plus 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup olive or vegetable oil(I use melted butter), plus more for greasing the bowl
5 large eggs-(I will try to bring them to room temp)
1 tablespoon salt
8 to 8 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Poppy or sesame seeds for sprinkling.

1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water.(115-120)

2. Whisk butter into yeast, then beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, with remaining sugar and salt. Gradually add flour. When dough holds together, it is ready for kneading. 

3. Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth. Add oil to a big bowl, put to dough in swirl it around to coat bottom then flip over.  Cover with plastic wrap, or clean towel, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until almost doubled in size. Dough may also rise in an oven that has been warmed to 150 degrees then turned off. Punch down dough, cover and let rise again in a warm place for another half-hour.

4. To make a 6-braid challah, either straight or circular, take half 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. Make a second loaf the same way. Place braided loaves on a greased cookie sheet with at least 2 inches in between.

5. Beat remaining egg and brush it on loaves. Either freeze breads or let rise another hour.

6. If baking immediately(and who doesn't), preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush loaves again. Sprinkle bread
with seeds, if using. If freezing, remove from freezer 5 hours before baking.

7. Bake in middle of oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden. (If you tap the top with fingernail and it sounds almost hollow it's done) Cool loaves on a rack.


Note: Any of the three risings can be done in the fridge for a few hours, for more deeply-developed flavor. When you’re ready to  work with it again, bring it back to room temperature before moving onto the next step.


 
 





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    This is to collect all the family receipes in one spot.

    My name is Cari and I have two children and three grandchildren.

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