BBA Challenge: Challah

Another week, another bread in the BBA challenge.  This week I decided to skip the brioche, which I skipped before to do the Casatiello because frankly, we don't need that butter/we had a brioche type bread before/and I'm too lazy to knead butter into dough.

So instead I'm skipping to the next bread after Casatiello, which is Challah.  Challah is a Hebrew bread that looks completely delectable from every picture that I've seen and I was looking forward to making this one

First, the dry ingredients get whisked together...

Then in a second bowl, the wet ingredients.

Pour the wet into the bowl with the dry...

Stir until it forms a soft ball..I needed to add the little bit extra water that Peter Reinhart suggests might be necessary.

Turn over onto floured surface and knead for 10 minutes, until it's smooth, silky and not sticky.

Place dough into greased bowl, turning to coat, cover with plastic wrap (or a towel like I did) and let ferment for an hour at room temp.

After an hour, turn out onto surface and knead for two minutes to get the gas out.  Place back in bowl and let ferment another hour.

Divide dough in three pieces for a 3 strand braid.

Form into boulee', cover with a towel and let rest for 10 minutes.

Roll into three ropes, thicker in the center with a slight taper to the ends.  Then start braiding in the middle.

When you reach the end, seal then tuck under and do the other side.  When finished it looks like this.

Place on parchment lined pan and brush with egg wash. Let rise for 60 to 75 minutes.

I think it made it to 1 1/2 time original size!

Paint with more egg wash...

Sprinkle with sesame seeds and bake in a 350 degree preheated oven for 20 minutes.  Turn 180 degrees then bake for another 20-40 minutes. 

Mine was done in 15 minutes...beautiful brown and the thermometer registered just over 190 degrees.

I couldn't get a good shot of the crumb that wasn't blurry, and believe me I tried...this bread is delicious and is going to make great sandwiches tommorrow!

Next time will be Ciabatta bread...if you want to join me in the challenge visit Nicole at Pinch My Salt to find out the info!


Sarah said...

Great job! I would love the challenge of making beautiful breads but never find the time. Nice work ~

Gina said...

Sarah: Thank you! I mostly do this when the kids are napping...

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