Friday, July 13, 2007

toast, anyone?

this type of challah is common to jewish bakeries where i live and is often called a bulke challah. because of its shape, it is typically sliced and used for toast and sandwiches — the braided kind, which is usually torn into individual pieces, being mostly reserved for the weekly sabbath, weddings and holidays.

the following recipe is my preferred one for a standard all purpose challah. it can be made bulke style in a loaf pan or braided and baked free-form. sliced thickly, bulke challah also makes the best french toast (pain perdu)!

bulke style challah

baked in a loaf pan to provide structure and shape, this loaf slices up easily and freezes quite well. it is the typical everyday egg-rich challah we like most in my town.

makes 1 large challah loaf


2 tsp yeast, *instant or active dry
1 tsp sugar
1/2 c warm water

1/2 c warm water
2 eggs plus 1 extra yolk
1/2 c vegetable oil
1/4 c to 1/3 c sugar (1/4 c is not very sweet)
2 tsp salt

3 1/2 c - 4 1/2 c* all purpose or bread flour
*add more as needed

1 egg yolk + 2 tsp water
sesame or black poppy seeds


see this post for how to make the challah

to make the bread, separate the dough into 3 equal sized balls.

in a greased large 9 1/4" x 5" loaf pan, place the three balls side by side and then use some vegetable oil to coat them all over. you need to do this step to prevent the dough from sticking.

place plastic wrap loosely over the bread and let it rise for about 45 minutes or until it has risen again. don't let it overproof; it will rise more in the oven while baking.

make your egg wash and coat the loaves well. sprinkle with either poppy seeds or sesame seeds.

bake at 375 F for 10 minutes and then about 25 to 30 minutes at 350F or until golden brown and internal temp is 180F.

remove from oven and let sit 5 minutes. then place on a rack to cool completely.

slice and use for toast or sandwiches!



The TriniGourmet said...

wweeeeiirrrrdddd.... *bookmarks* :)

gut shabbes! :D

Vcuisine said...

A nice bread BB. Viji

Emily DeVoto, Ph.D., said...

Lovely challah, BB. I made two braided ones this week from a friend's recipe. It rose like crazy, and the resulting challahs were huge. However, I think they absorbed too much air for the crumb to support and, while they had a nice bready texture, they spread out rather than puffing up - the dough was well, sort of flabby rather than muscular! Should I be using some bread flour instead of all AP?

burekaboy — said...

hey sarina - shabbat shalom :) LOL, you call it weird, i call it eaaaaasy!! or maybe lazzzzzy is better :) can't stand making sandwiches from the braided challahs; i need a somewhat rectangular piece of bread for that!! must....make....french toast. YUM.

viji - you could do the same thing with the recipe you used. makes good slices for sandwiches for work.

hi em - thanks :) sounds like you either had too much yeast or they over-proved; hard to say without seeing the recipe (e-me). i suspect they over-proved and with all the heat you guys had, it's no surprise. as for using AP or bread, either is fine but i think a majority of people use AP. i do find a difference in texture with bread flour but i don't think it would have made a difference in your case. i know someone who never kneads enough and the result is always challah which is cake like (i.e. it's the kneading which is more important than the type of flour here). a good one should have a crumb which is more "stringy" if you know what i mean. try it again, and keep your eye on the proving times — you may have to shorten it depending on how hot your kitchen is. oh yeah, if you're using instant type yeast, it tends to rise MUCH more quickly ..... many challah recipes were originally designed using the regular fleischmann's kind or fresh yeast. when i made this loaf, i used rapid rise and it [still] took 3 hrs for a total rise because i proved it at 70F.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Your challah looks great, extremely smooth and to die for! I'll have to try making it that way next time...

burekaboy — said...

rosa - thank you :) try doing it this way, next time around. it's a time saver, too.

Zev said...

I just stumbled upon your blog yesterday and I having been able to take my eyes off of it. Great recipes!!!

Do you by any chance know of a good water challah recipe? I really like the water challahs with the crispy crusts ;).

burekaboy — said...

hi zev - glad you found your way to my blog and are enjoying it. thanks for the nice comment.

will get back to you about the challah as soon as i can.