Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Challah Challah!

2 cups warm water or milk

2 pkgs dry active yeast

6-7 cups bread flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 t. salt

1/4 cup oil

1 egg

1. In large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water (careful of the temperature or it won't rise. You can use a thermometer to check the temperature. You want 75-120 degrees.) Stir in sugar and salt. Add 3 cups flour and mix well. Add oil and egg and mix well. Then add remaining flour. (The dough will be a little sticky but don't add more flour.)

2. Wet a clean dish towel and ring it out. Cover the bowl of dough with the towel. Put the bowl in the refrigerator and let stand overnight.

3. When dough is doubled in size braid as follows:

Divide the dough into 3 pieces. Cut 1 piece into thirds; with your hands roll each piece into a 16 inch-long rope or snake. Place ropes side by side and braid as you would hair.

Pinch ends of braid to seal. Place on cookie sheet the bottom loaf. Repeat with another piece for another loaf. Cut remaining dough into 6 pieces; roll each into 17 inch-long ropes. Braid each set of three ropes as shown in figure; pinch ends to seal.

Place each smaller braid on top of a large braid; tuck ends of top braid under bottom braid stretching top braid if necessary.

4. Arrange loaves at least 5 inches apart on oiled or greased cookie sheet; cover and let rise in warm place until doubles in size. (Depending on your house temperature. Find a warm place.)

5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook bread for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush top and sides of loaves with butter. Let cool on wire rack.

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