Happy Holidays! Hope you had a lovely Christmas and are looking forward to the new year. What better way than to try out a new recipe like this one from William Sonoma on challah bread. I always think of the college students at the Claremont Colleges that sell this bread every Friday to raise funds for Darfur. So goooood.
If I knew how easy it was to make this bread, I would have made it sooner! This bread is great by itself or with mashed avocado on top with coffee. I just love the smell and taste of fresh baked bread.
Check out the full recipe on the hyperlink and I also included some notes below on what I learned/Googled along the way.
- Recipe makes 2 loaves.
- No stand mixer is needed. I mixed everything with a wooden spoon. The recipe is written for both methods. Using a stand mixer will probably result in a smoother looking braid but I like the rustic look.
- Active dry yeast dissolves in warm water and doesn’t need to foam although the recipe indicates it should.
- Use fresh ingredients. To make this, I used ingredients that I bought the same day (eggs, flour, butter).
- For butter to come to room temperature quicker, slice it and lay it out on a cutting board or plate.
- The hardest part of making this is waiting for the bread to rise the first time (takes about 2 hours). Place the loaves in a warm room covered with a damp paper towel, cheesecloth, or plastic wrap and wait patiently (I kept peeking).
- No rolling pin or pastry brush is needed. I used my hands to roll out the dough ropes to make the braid and used a spoon to apply the egg wash before going into the oven.
- The recipe calls for a 4-threaded braid. I opted for a traditional 3-thread braid as a newbie, I wasn’t taking chances and over complicating things.
- Experiment with add-ins like raisins or ground cinnamon. Next time, I’ll add poppy seeds on top. Enjoy!