Challah is a rich, dense Jewish bread, similar to brioche.
Challah is a rich, dense Jewish bread, similar to brioche. It's often served during the weekend for Sabbath meals and is famous for its plaited appearance. During high holidays like Rosh Hashanah, the braided challah may be rolled into a circular shape to signify the cycle of a year.
Making homemade challah is no easy feat — particularly the first time around, it may be a nerve-racking, less-than-pretty experience, but as long as the dough rises and it reaches the ideal temperature in the oven, you should end up with challah that has a crunchy, bright golden crust and soft, moist center.
Even though making challah dough is a several-hour-long process, it is incredibly rewarding to transform flour and yeast into fluffy balls of dough.
With practice, rolling and braiding the dough into intricate plaits will become easier. While you can top the bread with poppy seeds or sesame seeds, this recipe just contains a simple egg wash that bakes into a shiny exterior.
The recipe makes two loaves, but one is plenty for a table of five people. Feel free to half the recipe or freeze a loaf for another day.
See the challah recipe.