Food

Sweet Challah Bread

After my challah making disaster last year it was time to set my bread fears aside and try again.  With a fresh start I turned to the internet and searched for a step by step video so I could follow the “look” of making Challah.  “How to make challah” from Howcast.com was my favorite and I followed it from beginning to end .

Looking back at my first attempt I was able to identify a few of the areas I went wrong in:

  • I didnt let my yeast rise enough- this round it was overflowing out of the bowl
  • My braid was two thick and the middle didn’t cook- I actually think my dough was meant for 2 loaves (embarrassing).  Tip: If the crust is getting brown two quickly make a tent for the loaf out of aluminum foil.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

 Sweet Challah Bread
Adapted by Bon Appétit
Yield: 2 loaves

  • 1/2 cup plus 2/3 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoons plus 3/4 cup sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 7 cups (about) all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon water

Directions

Combine 1/2 cup warm water, yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in large glass measuring cup and stir until yeast dissolves. Let yeast mixture stand at room temperature until foamy, about 10 minutes.

In large bowl of heavy-duty mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat 5 eggs until blended. Add oil, salt and 3/4 cup sugar and beat until pale yellow and slightly thickened, about 4 minutes. Beat in 2/3 cup warm water. Add yeast mixture and beat until blended. Remove whisk and fit mixer with dough hook. Add enough flour 1 cup at a time to form smooth dough, beating well after each addition. Beat on medium speed until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes, adding flour by tablespoonfuls if sticky. Turn out onto floured surface and knead 2 minutes.

Lightly oil large bowl. Add dough, turning to coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap, then with clean kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

Punch down dough. Cover with plastic and clean kitchen towel and let rise 30 minutes.

Grease 2 large baking sheets. Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface. Divide dough into 2 equal portions. Divide each portion into 3 equal pieces. Roll each piece into 9-inch-long rope. Braid 3 ropes together; pinch ends together to seal. Repeat with remaining dough pieces, forming 2 braids. Place each braid on baking sheet. Cover with towel . Let rise in warm area until almost doubled, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Whisk yolk with 1 tablespoon water to blend. Brush dough with egg mixture. Bake 10 minutes. Bake until bread is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on bottom, about 35 minutes. Transfer loaves to rack and cool completely.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Combine 1/2 cup warm water, yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in large glass measuring cup and stir until yeast dissolves. Let yeast mixture stand at room temperature until foamy, about 10 minutes.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Beat 5 eggs until blended. Add oil, salt and 3/4 cup sugar and beat until pale yellow and slightly thickened. Add in 2/3 cup warm water.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Add yeast mixture and beat until blended.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

With a dough hook add flour 1 cup at a time, beating well between each cup, to form smooth dough.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead for 5 minutes.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

 Place dough into a large lightly oiled bowl- turn dough to coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel. Let dough rise for 1 hour.  Punch down dough. Cover with plastic and a towel and let rise 30 for an additional minutes.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface. Divide dough into 2 equal portions and then each portion into 3 equal pieces.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

 Roll each piece into 12-inch-long rope. Braid 3 ropes together; pinch ends together and under to seal.  Repeat with the other half of dough. Place each braid on baking sheet and cover with a towel to rise for another 30 minutes.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Whisk together yolk and  1 tablespoon water. Brush dough with mixture.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake for around 35 minutes until bread is golden brown and your house smells like heaven.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

 I always slice and freeze bread loaves and muffins  to keep them fresh longer and defrost to use as needed.

Sweet Challah Bread | www.vanillaandvelvet.com

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