Thursday, January 16, 2014

Bread (known as challah, houska or chalka)

Jewish challah bread is a rich, slightly sweet yeast bread that is typically braided and eaten at the Sabbath evening meal on Friday nights and at ceremonial dinners. 





I just wanted a nice sweet egg bread to go with the tuscan pork dish I made from this site for dinner.











Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Rising time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes

Ingredients:
2 large eggs (+ 1 large egg white later)
5 ounces warm water
2 1/2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons brown sugar or honey)
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 1/2 tablespoons sugar
3 cups bread flour
1 package active dry yeast (1 1/2 tsp)

Preparation:

Put 2 eggs, water, oil, honey and vanilla into a bowl (I use a bread machine to mix as I over mix) 
Add salt, sugar and flour. 
Make a well in the flour and add yeast. 
Mix until JUST combined, and let rest for 10 min.
Knead more and let rest for 10 more min.

(or Run bread machine on dough setting.)

When done, put bread on lightly floured surface and knead 1 minute. 
Make 3 equal ropes of dough and braid on a parchment-lined baking pan. 
Cover with greased plastic wrap and let it rise for 45 to 75 minutes, or until nearly doubled.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. 

Brush dough with beaten egg white. 

Bake for 25 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 190 degrees. 
Cool completely on a wire rack.

NOTE for best results: Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature (and warmish for water.) I've reduced sugar to 1.5 T and it still turns out great.

"Bon Appetit!"

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