Monday Menu – Challah Bread

One of these days I’ll share a recipe that is healthy, full of fresh veggies, and oh so delicious. But until that day comes I guess you’ll have to live with the tasty baked treats that I come up with and truth be told … my family likes the baked goodies a lot better than the veggie dishes.

This week I had a great idea after seeing a picture of homemade ricotta that my brother posted on Instagram and immediately made my list and started planning out what I was going to do with it. But I got stuck. I couldn’t decide if I wanted sweet or savory and didn’t make it even though I have the majority of the ingredients waiting in the fridge.

So instead of the ricotta I made bread. I may have mentioned a time or two that I love baking and I’ve been wanting to try my hand at Challah. It always looks so pretty sitting on the shelves at the store and I’ve heard such wonderful things about it that I knew that I had to make it.

challah bread

I won’t lie… it took a while to make the bread. It wasn’t a quick bread by any means but it was definitely worth all the hard work and there is something about actually working with the dough. Kneading it, working it from something soft and mushy into something smooth and pliable and I just love the smell of the yeasty dough.

Challah Bread

Ingredients

  • 4 teaspoons active dry yeast (2 packages
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 cup warm water (about 110 degrees)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 egg, beaten

Instructions

  1. Place the yeast, honey and warm water in a mixing bowl. Stir and let stand for about 10 minutes, until creamy and foamy.
  2. Add the melted butter and eggs and mix well.
  3. If you're using a stand mixer make sure you have the dough hook attached and add the flour one cup at a time until it forms a soft dough.
  4. Place the dough on a well-floured surface and knead until the dough becomes smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. I tried to let my mixer do the kneading but it didn't seem to like it all that much so I pulled it out and did it by hand.
  5. Place the dough in a large, well-greased bowl, then flip the dough over to coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and then with a clean towel and let it stand in a warm place for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  6. Punch the dough down and let it rise again for about 30 minutes or so.
  7. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  8. At this point you can place to dough in to greased loaf pans or you can divide the dough into 3 equal pieces and braid.
  9. Brush the braid with the beaten egg and bake for 30 - 40 minutes. About half way through baking brush the bread with the egg again to get into all of the creases and spaces that opened up more from baking.
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I will say that when I braided the dough it looked amazing and then once it was done rising it didn’t look so good anymore. I’m not sure what happened but it looked like it was pulling apart in places. I pinched some of it back together the best that I could and just went with it because it looked good enough for my first try.

making Challah bread

Andrew had to get in on the kneading action too. It never fails that he’ll show up every single time I’m doing something in the kitchen because he wants to help. Sometimes he’s helpful… but only sometimes.

The bread turned out amazingly well and everyone loved it. I’m planning different things that I can do with the bread… french toast & bread pudding came to mind first.

So, do you have any suggestions for what I can do with leftover Challah bread?

25 Responses to Monday Menu – Challah Bread
  1. Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell
    February 4, 2013 | 12:09 pm

    That looks FANTASTIC, Jackie!!! I wanna try it!

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:45 pm

      Give it shot! Just make sure that you have the time to do it because it is a bit time consuming.

  2. Debra
    February 4, 2013 | 12:21 pm

    It would make awesome French Toast! I don’t have much luck with bread or anything with yeast…I never seem to get that balance right.

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:44 pm

      I’ve had trouble before too. It’s important that the yeast isn’t old and that you don’t kill it with salt.

  3. Andrea
    February 4, 2013 | 12:21 pm

    Yum! Challah bread is one of my favorites to make… and enjoy afterwards. I have my own hens so it is a great way to use up my excess eggs.

    My favorite variation is to add little dices of apples. Oh, my! It is so good.

    Leftovers? We tend to have less with Challah bread. It is an amazing french toast, but also makes fabulous croutons – very buttery and flakey.

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:44 pm

      Diced apples with a bit of cinnamon would be really good. Kinda like an apple fritter!

  4. Missy @ Wonder, Friend
    February 4, 2013 | 12:24 pm

    Looks so good! Maybe, just maybe, I’ll try it (I’m such a terrible baker!).

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:41 pm

      It wasn’t that hard really and if you don’t braid it it’s a lot easier.

  5. Kristi {at} Live & Love Out Loud
    February 4, 2013 | 1:33 pm

    Looks so yummy!

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:39 pm

      It was super yummy! I’ll be making it again for sure.

  6. Making Our Life Matter
    February 4, 2013 | 1:49 pm

    Looks good! What about baked french toast with the leftovers?

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:38 pm

      I didn’t think about that. Great idea!

  7. Kristin Barclay
    February 4, 2013 | 3:34 pm

    Looks good, one day maybe I’ll have the time to make some!

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:38 pm

      It’s definitely a weekend thing for sure! But it’s worth it.

  8. Carrie with Children
    February 4, 2013 | 3:49 pm

    I have always wanted to try and make bread at home – it looks like yours turned out great!

    • Jackie
      February 4, 2013 | 8:36 pm

      I love making bread! Give it try sometime… you’ll love it!

  9. Emily @FamilyNLifeLV
    February 4, 2013 | 10:15 pm

    What a fun activity to involve the kids in!

  10. Emily @FamilyNLifeLV
    February 4, 2013 | 10:16 pm

    What a fun kids activity!

  11. Hanan
    February 5, 2013 | 12:44 am

    Oh yum! I haven’t had Challah in forever. I didn’t realize it was that simple to make.

    • Jackie
      February 5, 2013 | 8:21 am

      It is pretty easy to make! Just time consuming… but it’s totally worth it.

  12. Kimberly
    February 5, 2013 | 8:31 am

    I have always wanted to try making this. It looks delicious!

    • Jackie
      February 5, 2013 | 10:17 am

      It was delicious! Try making it one of these days… it’s not that hard.

  13. FiddleDeeAshley
    February 5, 2013 | 9:08 am

    Oh, I love challah. I haven’t had it in forever and now you have me craving it!

    • Jackie
      February 5, 2013 | 10:36 am

      This was the first time I’ve made it and have totally fallen in love with it. I will be making it again real soon!

  14. [...] love these recent posts by Jackie: 48 Questions, Mom Hair, and her recipe for Challah Bread (mostly because I like to say “Holla!”). /* /* var addthis_config = [...]

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