Challah is wonderful braided bread that is traditionally served on Shabbat and holidays. And since we have just come through the Jewish holiday season and are preparing for the holidays in the United States we thought we would share a special challah recipe with you!
This Challah recipe happens to be my mother in laws. She makes amazing challah that is delicious right out of the oven with butter—warm soft, and slightly sweet!
But since I am writing for My Olive Tree I am recommending that you consider dipping your challah in olive oil and herbs as an amazing appetizer or addition to your next special meal!
This was the recipe she gave to me when Paul and I first got married so that I could carry on this lovely tradition!
1.5 cups hot water
4 teaspoons yeast
4 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons salt
1 egg yolk (for brushing on top of bread)
2.5 lbs. flour (1/2 of a 5 lb. bag or roughly 8.5 cups–Better for Bread Flour if available)
Preheat oven to 350.
Mix yeast in water, add butter, honey and 1.5 cups flour, gently blend together and allow to sit for 15 minutes.
Knead in salt and eggs and keep adding remaining flour until mixing bowl comes clean or if kneading by hand until the dough is no longer sticky.
Divide dough in half and then divide halves into thirds.
Take three balls of dough and roll into long strands to prepare for braiding challah (each strand should be roughly 1.5 inches in diameter).
Line three strands up and tuck the ends together with a firm pinch—begin braid.
Repeat with remaining dough.
Mix egg yolk with 1 Tablespoon water.
Once braid is complete brush dough with egg yolk/water mixture.
Line 1 large cookie sheet or 2 smaller sheets with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until lightly brown.
Serve warm with a plate of extra virgin olive oil and dried herbs. Enjoy!