Challah Bread for Daring Bakers

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     May’s Daring Bakers’ Challenge was pretty twisted – Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood challenged us to make challah! Using recipes from all over, and tips from “A Taste of Challah,” by Tamar Ansh, she encouraged us to bake beautifully braided breads.  I was really excited to get started because Challah is one of the breads of my list of breads to make.

     I immediately jumped in the weekend after the challenge was posted.  I went with the honey white Challah bread.  The dough was very sticky even after I kneaded in additional flour but I kept working with it.  The dough rose when it was supposed to.  When I went to put it into three strands I had a very difficult time.  By the time I had braided it the strands were seeping into each other.  I cooked the bread and when I took it out you couldn’t even tell that it had been braided.  It tasted wonderful but it didn’t have the look so it was back to the drawing board.

      My second attempt at Challah was with the Easy Challah Bread.  As the name states it was easy to make and the dough was much less sticky this time around.  When I braided the strands they stayed seperate and the loaf cooked up beautifully.  It was golden brown and crunchy on the outside but soft and fluffy on the inside.  The bread was slightly sweet and delicious as toast.  I’m looking forward to making Challah rolls for sandwiches this summer and trying a few different recipes soon.

Easy Challah (from
2 c. flour
½ c. warm water
1 t. rapid rise yeast (half a package)
¼ c. sugar
1 large egg
1 t. salt
1 T. butter, melted
     1.       In a large bowl mix the flour, sugar, and salt.
     2.      In another large bowl combine the water and yeast.  Let the yeast sit for 5 minutes or until foamy.
     3.     Add 1 cup of the flour mixture to the yeast mixture and beat until well combined.  Cover with a towel and let stand for 30 minutes.
     4.      Add the egg to the dough and mix well.  
     5.      Add in the remaining flour and mix until the flour is well incorporated.  Remove the dough from the bowl and knead for 10 minutes.  Transfer to an oiled bowl.  Cover and let rise for 1 hour.
     6.      Punch the dough down and knead for 2-3 minutes.  
     7.      Divide the dough into 3 parts.  Roll each part into a long strand.  Braid the three strands together, tucking under the ends.
     8.      Place the braided loaf on a greased cookie sheet.  Cover with a towel and allow to rise for 1 hour.
     9.      Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
     10.  Brush the loaf with the melted butter.  Bake at 400 for 10 minutes.  Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes or until the loaf is golden brown.                       
     11.   Cool on a wire rack.

This post linked to: 
Not Baaad Sundays, Scrumptious Sundays, Sundae Scoop Sundays


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