Prep 30 mins
Cook 4 hrs 30 mins
This was invented on a whim. I spent an afternoon recently making my Challah, Multicolor with some friends. As we were admiring the rich colors of the braided loaves while they were rising, we wondered about other natural colors we could use. One brilliant woman (Yay Shani!) suggested chocolate. Now who could say no to that? I scratched out what I thought would be appropriate measurements to make it a bit sweeter to balance the cocoa, and voila! Chocolate challah. Now, is it bread or dessert? Hmmmm..... (One more note -- this bread took substantially longer to rise than most others I've made using instant yeast. I don't know if the cocoa (perhaps the alkalinization?) somehow slows the yeast. I will keep checking into this, and will update as I find out. Meanwhile, please note the extended time estimates for rising.) This makes the most awesome PB&J sandwiches. Yummm.
- 1 cup warm water
- 1⁄3 cup canola oil, plus
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 2⁄3 cup honey
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 cups bread flour
- 2⁄3 cup cocoa powder
- 4 teaspoons instant yeast (fast-rising, or bread machine yeast)
- 2 1⁄2-3 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 egg, for glazing
- Mix the warm water, 1/3 cup canola oil, honey, 2 eggs and salt in a large mixing bowl until thoroughly combined.
- Add the bread flour and cocoa powder and mix until dough is a shaggy mess.
- Add the instant yeast and mix well.
- Now add the all-purpose flour one cup at a time, until too thick to stir.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, and continue to add flour while kneading for about 10-15 minutes.
- When you are done kneading the dough will bounce back at you when you press on it. The surface will no longer be sticky or come off on your fingers, but will be tacky to the touch, like a post-it note.
- Pour the 2 Tbsp canola into a mixing bowl, and coat the bottom and sides with oil.
- Put the dough in the oiled bowl, and flip the dough around to uniformly coat with oil.
- Cover the bowl and set in a warm spot to rise until doubled. (For me this was about 2 hours.).
- Punch down dough and separate into loaves. Loaves can be braided like traditional challah, or baked in a bread loaf pan, or formed into any shape you like.
- Put formed loaves aside to rise a second time, covered, until doubled in size. (This took about 2 1/2 hours for me.).
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Just prior to baking, mix one remaining egg with a bit of water (about a teaspoon or so) and a small pinch of salt. Use this mixture to glaze the loaves.
- Bake loaves for 30 minutes, rotating once midway to keep browning even.
- Cool on racks.
- Freezes well.
I made this recipe exactly as written with one deviation; I added dark chocolate chunks. This is a great recipe and it was enjoyed at a function that I brought it to. No one at the event had ever heard of Chocolate Challah and thought that it was a fun novelty. I made an accompanying spread of Nutella, hazel nuts and cream for the guests to spread on the slices. It was enjoyed by all. Made to AZ Swap #22.