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A delicious and easy way to make a perfect Challah for your Shabbat Dinner. Start it early so it has a chance to cool. It also makes terrific French Toast.
- Place first seven ingredients into bread machine in the order recommended by bread machine manufacturer.
- Set the Machine to Sweet Dough or Dough (if no Sweet Dough option - if using raisins, use Dough Raisin setting adding raisins at appropriate time).
- After the Machine is done, let the dough rise again in the machine.
- Punch down dough.
- Take it out and put dough into an oiled bowl and cover it.
- Let stand for about an hour.
- Punch it down again and divide in half to make 2 medium loaves or make 1 large loaf.
- Divide dough into three sections per loaf and roll into ropes.
- Braid Challah*.
- Place braided Challah on greased cookie sheet, cover and let rise for an hour.
- Before baking, brush with a beaten egg mixed with a little water or remaining egg white mixed with a little water. Sprinkle with poppy seeds if desired.
- Bake at 350 for 30-45 minutes, until golden brown.
- Place on wire rack to cool completely.
- * For Rosh Hashanah do not braid but form Challah into a round shape and add raisins (omit seeds).
Much as I wanted to love this recipe, I can't.
This is a very sweet bread, but it just doesn't have the richness I associate with Challah. My husband called it "homemade Wonder Bread." The texture of the crumb is nice, but the crust is far too soft. It needs more eggs.
It's a very time-consuming recipe. FOUR rises? I can't even imagine the work this would be if it were made by hand.
I also have a problem with the way the recipe is written. I assume that everyone who considers making it will read the instructions through first, and realize that you don't add ALL the ingredients to the bread machine, as the first direction states. It would be a nuisance trying to extract the egg white, the seeds and the raisins. But adding the ingredients in the order listed is not correct for any bread machine. Some call for adding the liquid ingredients, and then the dry ones; for others, it's the other way around. None are mixed up like this. It's not that important, unless you're using a delay cycle, but it's a frustrating direction.
The ingredient list mentions poppy seeds; the directions mention sesame seeds. This brings up the question: Are you supposed to put poppy seeds into the bread, and then top it with sesame seeds, or are they both for topping, and you make your choice?
325? is far too cool an oven for bread. I baked mine at 375? for the required time, and it was still underdone (in an accurate oven).
It's not awful. It's a very sweet, light bread. It makes good toast. It just doesn't have the depth I expected.
But thanks for posting!