I learned how to make challah at last night’s @shabbosproject #challahbake in Brooklyn. Turns out it’s ridiculously easy to make. The braiding part is confusing though, so I’m not even going to try to explain. YouTube.
This recipe will make a lot of challah (3 or more challahs, depending on how large you want them to be), but you can always freeze the dough if you don’t want to bake immediately. I learned last night that one can only say the blessing over the challah dough if it uses 5 lbs of flour.
- 4 cups warm water
- 1.5 cups sugar
- 3 x .25oz packets dry yeast
- 2 tbsp salt
- 2 eggs + 1 egg yolk, beaten
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 5 lbs all purpose flour
- Poppy or sesame seeds
- Combine water, sugar, and yeast in large bowl. Let sit for 2 minutes.
- Add salt, eggs, oil, and flour.
- Knead for 5 minutes until dough comes together in a ball and is not sticky.
- Cover dough with a towel and let rise for 1 hour.
- Braid challah and let rise for 1 more hour.
- Brush top of dough with egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tsp water) and sprinkle poppy or sesame seeds over top.
- Bake at 350 degrees F until golden brown (about 1 hr)
It’s a bit of a process to make, but warm, freshly baked pita bead is worth the effort! I was hoping for even fluffier pita, and am wondering if I should have rolled the dough out slightly thicker. Does it matter that the yeast I used was about a year old? Not sure. I filled the pita pockets with slow-roasted lamb and lots of tzatziki sauce. Stay posted for those recipes and pictures!
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 1/4 cups warm water
- 1 1/2 cups bread flour
- 1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- Cornmeal for dusting baking sheets
1. In a mixing bowl, combine yeast, honey, and 1/2 cup warm water. Let mixture bubble, about 4 minutes.
2. In a second bowl, stir flours together. Mix 1/2 cup of flour mixture into yeast mixture. Cover with saran wrap and let stand for 40 minutes, or until dough doubles in size.
3. Add remaining flour mixture, remaining water, oil, and salt to dough. Knead dough on floured surface for about 10 minutes. Place ball of dough in a greased bowl. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 hour.
4. Punch dough. Separate dough into 8 balls. On a floured surface, flatten each dough ball and roll disks out with a rolling pin until they are about the size of average pieces of pita bread.
5. Place rounds of dough onto baking sheets dusted with cornmeal. Cover dough loosely with kitchen towels and let sit for 30 minutes.
6. Preheat oven to 500º F. Place dough directly on oven rack and bake for 2 minutes per side.
Irish Soda Bread with Raisins
Did you know there is no yeast in soda bread? Without any rising time, this Irish recipe is a quick and simple treat for St. Paddy’s Day! Slather with butter and enjoy.
- 4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 cup butter, cut into small cubes
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp baking soda
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Stir together sifted flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Using your hands, mix butter into flour mixture until mixture is crumbly. Add raisins. In a separate bowl, whisk buttermilk and egg together. Add baking soda to buttermilk mixture. Mix buttermilk mixture into flour mixture until well combined. Form dough into a ball and place in a greased baking dish. Using a greased knife, make a large cross about 1/2 -inch deep on top of dough. Bake for 50 minutes or until golden brown.