Sunday, January 3, 2010

Dusting Off the Cobwebs

In preparation of school starting back up...I decided to bake a few things today and get the rust out. First up was challah bread. I used an easy recipe from the New York Times. It required that I knead by hand as it was too much for my KitchenAid. WOW.....kneading is some serious exercise--- but oh so worth it. My braiding technique needs work but otherwise....this bread is very tasty! I made one with sesame seeds and one without. Try's really very simple and looks so impressive. Braiding is just as you would braid hair. And if you don't know how to do that...there are tons of videos on YouTube regarding braiding bread. Next time...I am going to try the 6 strand vs just the simple 3 strand. Yes....I live on the edge....HA!!!

Rising dough...makes 2 loaves

Braided loaves rising again...

Braided Challah Bread
1 1/2 Tbsp active dry yeast
1 Tbsp plus 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil, plus more for greasing the bowl
5 eggs
1 Tbsp salt
8 1/2 cups flour
Poppy or sesame seeds for sprinkling

1. Dissolve yeast and 1 Tbsp sugar in 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water.
2. Whisk oil into yeast, then beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, along 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. Place dough in a well greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for one hour.
4. After dough has about doubled, punch it down, cover and let rise for another half hour in a warm place.
5. Punch down dough and braid into your desired shape.
6. Beat the remaining egg and brush it on the loaves. At this point, you can freeze the loaves to bake later, or let them rise for another hour if you’re going to bake now.
7. As the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 375 F and brush the loaves with egg again. Sprinkle seeds on your loaves as desired.
8. Bake in the middle of the oven (on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper if you have it) for 35-50 minutes. The loaves should be golden.


  1. Wow, those look yummy! So listen Margaret, what's your address 'cause I want to move next door to you.

    And you are terrific for sharing your recipes. I love cookbooks and reading recipes. I don't make any of them but I love to read them.

    Happy New Year to you....................

  2. Thanks so much Virginia!! I am loving this latest pursuit and can't wait to see where it takes me. My pants are definitely TIGHTER though...HA!!! Happy 2010 to you as well....Margaret