I make Challah every year for the high holidays. I use a basic recipe for plain sesame, raisin and my variation with chocolate chips. I like how they come out. I'm wondering if anyone has a recipe that they love so that I can compare? The recipe I use is from Daphna Rabinovich, with variations re no raisins or with chocolate, etc: http://www.foodtv.ca/recipes/recipede....
I think I posted this once before...but have never tried any variation/flavor
4 cups warm water (105-115 degrees)
2 (2oz) bars fresh yeast (NOT packets of dry yeast)
1 T sugar
1 (5lb) bag of high gluten flour
2 cups sugar
1 1⁄2 T salt
3 large eggs
1 1⁄2 cups canola or corn oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Preheat oven to 300, open oven door.
Combine water & yeast in medium metal or glass bowl. Stir in 1 T sugar. Place the mixture on the open oven door and let stand for 10 minutes- will be bubbly (if not bubbly, something went wrong-must start over). Turn oven off.
Place flour in large aluminum bowl, remove 2 cups of flour. Stir in 2 cups sugar and salt, mixing well. Push the flour against the sides of the bowl, leaving a center well. `
Pour the yeast mixture, 3 eggs, & 1 1⁄2 cups oil into the well. Mix with a wooden spoon until it can no longer stir.
Knead the dough with your hands until it no longer sticks to the sides- should be smooth & springy. If sticky, knead in a small amount of flour until smooth.
Brush the top of dough with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and a dry towel. Let rise for 1 1⁄2 hours in a warm room.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface & punch down. Divide into 5-7 sections. Divide each section into 3 equal pieces. Roll each portion into a thick rope. Place them side by side onto a lightly greased baking sheet, pinch the top together. Braid & pinch the bottom ends together. Repeat with all dough.
Brush with beaten egg. Let rise, uncovered 45-60 minutes. Preheat oven to 350. Bake 25-35 minutes until golden & sounds hollow when bottom is tapped. (after 15-20 minutes reverse the baking sheet direction). Cool on wire rack.
For Rosh Hashana I take my challah dough and roll it out into one long thin strip. Then I mix apples (use ones that hold up to baking-not macintosh) with some honey and cinnamon. I use this mixture to stuff my long strip of challah (just roll the dough around the apple mixture). Once it is stuffed, I take the dough and coil it around to it forms a big bun like challah. Then I bake it a little extra than normal.
I've posted this before but it's worth repeating.
Czernowitzer challah, adapted from "A Blessing of Bread," by Maggie Glezer:
Following the shaping instructions will give you a fine-grained, super-soft textured bread.
I strongly recommend this book.