Posts Tagged With: Challah

Jalapeño Cheddar Challah Rolls

I have 4 jalapeño plants this year and all are very happy.  I will definitely be replenishing my supply of pickled jalapeños. But I have a bunch of other plans for my peppers as well.

The first is a Challah I have been waiting all year to make; I needed to wait for my plants to start producing. Now that they have, time for jalapeño cheddar challah rolls.

I was expecting the cheese to remain remain in chunks and be a little gooey, but the cheese became fully incorporated into the dough. The texture is beautiful – soft, but substantial and very satisfying.  The peppers provide just the right amount of kick.

Jalapeño Cheddar Challah Rolls

adapted from the Frugal Ima

1 cup water
2 tablespoons honey

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

1 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast
4 oz cheddar cheese, cut into small cubes
4 –  8 jalapeño peppers, depending upon size and your preference, halved, deseeded and sliced (from the garden)


Put all the ingredients in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook. Mix and knead on low speed till it’s all smooth, about 10 minutes. Place in an oiled bowl.

Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

Grease a round pan. Punch down the dough. Divide and shape it into 8 rolls and place it into the pan.

Cover and let rise for about another half hour. Heat the oven to 350F while the dough is rising. With a pair of scissors, snip an x into the top of each risen roll.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the internal temperature in the center roll is 190F.

Let cool on a wire rack.  Enjoy!

Makes 8 rolls.

Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Southern Sweet Challah (Doris Koplin)

Practically perfect…that is the only way to describe this challah.

I can say that because this is not my recipe, it is actually a recipe from Doris Koplin of Atlanta that I got from Maggie Glazer’s book A Blessing of Bread. But truly, this was as amazing challah.  With the icing and raisins it was like a perfect breakfast cake (I used a thin coating of icing); without it is an eggy challah with a soft pillowing texture.

I made this the week before my son’s 8th birthday. When I told him I was making a challah with icing, he asked if it was for his birthday.  I told him that he could decide once he tasted it whether he wanted it to be his birthday weekend challah. All it took was one bite for him to decide it was definitely the challah for his birthday.

Southern Sweet Challah

Very slightly adapted from Maggie Glazer’s A Blessing of Bread

1 Tbsp plus 1/4 tsp instant yeast

About 3 3/4 cups bread flour

3/4 cup warm water

2 large eggs, plus 1 for glazing

1 large egg yolk

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 1/2 tsp Kosher salt

1/3 cup granulated sugar

Poppy seeds or sesame seeds for sprinkling (optional)


1 3/4 cups confectioner’s sugar

2 Tbsp to 1/4 cup water

1/2 cup raisins (mixed white and black)


In a large bowl, whisk together the yeast and 3/4 cup of the flour, then whisk in the warm water until smooth. Let the slurry stand uncovered for 10 – 20 minutes, or until it begins to ferment and puff up slightly.

Whisk in the 2 eggs, egg yolk, oil, salt and sugar into the puffed yeast slurry until the eggs are incorporated and the salt and sugar have dissolved.

With a wooden spoon, mix in the remaining 3 cups of flour all at once. When the mixture is a shaggy ball, scrape it onto your work surface and knead it until it is smooth and soft, no more than 10 minutes. (Soak your mixing bowl in hot water to clean it and warm it for fermenting the dough)

Place the dough in the warm bowl and cover with plastic wrap (or a reusable bowl cover). Refrigerate the dough overnight. The next morning, remove from the refrigerator and let it rise until it has doubled in bulk, about 2 hours.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.  Divide the dough in have and braid or shape each loaf as you desire. Cover in plastic wrap.  Let it proof until tripled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

30 minutes before baking, arrange the oven rack in the top 1/3 of the oven and heat to 325F. Beat the remaining egg with a pinch of salt for glazing the breads.

When the dough has tripled and remains indented when gently pressed with your finger, brush the bread with the egg glaze.  Sprinkle with the seeds if desired. Bake for 25 – 35 minutes until well browned. Remove from the oven and cool on a rack.

If you want to ice the loaves, when they have cooled, in a large bowl, stir the confectioner’s sugar with 2 Tbsp water until a thick paste forms. Mix in the raisins and enough water to make the icing the consistency of thick cream. Spoon over the cooled challah, and allow it to set and dry for at least 30 minutes, preferable for 1 hour.


Makes 2 one-pound loaves.

Categories: Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

Maple Peanut Butter Challah

Now THIS was a really different challah! It was rich in texture and loaded with peanut butter flavor! It really cried out to be toasted and topped with jelly or preserves. First a banana rum preserve,

then a simple strawberry.

And look at the beautiful color of the loaf!

Not a challah to have with a meal, but a challah to have AS a meal!  I really wanted to make french toast with it – that would have been superb – but it did not last long enough. I take that as a good sign.

Maple Peanut Butter Challah

adapted from Peanut Butter & Company

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 cup lukewarm water
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup maple peanut butter
2 large eggs + 1 egg for the egg wash (from Farmer Kim)
2 tsp kosher salt
4 1/2 to 6 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup olive oil


In a large bowl, combine the yeast, teaspoon of sugar, and cup of lukewarm water. Let sit for 5 minutes until it starts to foam.

Transfer to the base of your mixer with the dough hook attached and add the maple syrup, peanut butter, and 2 eggs. Whisk together until completely smooth, about 5 minutes.

Add the salt and the flour, one cup at a time, until it starts to come together and pull away from the sides. You may not need all the flour. Let the dough hook knead the dough for about 5 minutes or until smooth, elastic, and not too sticky to the touch.

Grease a large, clean bowl with the oil and place the ball of dough in it, turning once to coat on all sides.Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight.

In the morning, remove from the refrigerator, bring to room temperature and punch down the dough gently. Cover again and let rise for 30-45 minutes.

Roll the dough out onto a floured surface and gently knead into a smooth ball. Shape and braid as you like. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Let rise a final time for 30 minutes.

When you are ready to bake, preheat your oven to 375°F. Beat the last egg and use a pastry brush to lightly brush over the loaf. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the top is glossy and golden brown.

Let cool completely before slicing and serving. Enjoy!

Makes 1 loaf.


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Lemon Poppyseed Challah

Time for a challah that will make a great breakfast bread. I love lemon poppyseed cake, so I was very excited about trying this.

It was a very easy dough to work with and produced a wonderfully light, fluffy bread.

The icing added a nice sweetness to balance the tang of the lemon.

It was a wonderful breakfast, toasted with butter and jam.

Lemon Poppyseed Challah

From The Challah Blog

1/2 c water
1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 tsp plus 1 tbsp sugar
1 egg plus 1 more for egg wash (you can also reserve a bit and just use one)
2 tbsp canola oil
2 c bread flour
1/2 tsp salt
zest of about 3/4 of a lemon, finely chopped
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp poppyseeds
1/2 c powdered sugar
2-3 tbsp milk or almond milk
1/4 – 1/2 tsp vanilla, to your taste


Proof the yeast in warm water with 1/2 tsp sugar.  While the yeast is proofing, zest the lemon and squeeze out the lemon juice.  When the yeast is foamy (about 10 minutes), mix in the egg, oil, zest,and juice.  Mix with a wooden spoon.  Add the flour, salt, and poppy seeds.

Place in a stand mixer. Knead for about 7 minutes. This dough is a bit wetter than most of your doughs and may feel heavier, but it should not feel sticky. Place in an oiled bowl and let rest until doubled in size, about an hour and a half.

When the dough has doubled, punch down and braid as normal. I did a 4 strand challah.

Let rest an additional thirty minutes. Egg wash and bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, turning halfway.

While your challah bakes, you can make the drizzle frosting. Cool the challah on a wire rack. Drizzle the frosting over the challah with a teaspoon.


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Sukkot Lulav Challah

My cousin shared a picture of an amazing challah with me, a challah for Sukkot shaped like a lulav and etrog. I took one look and knew I had to try to do it. And I honestly can’t believe how beautiful it turned out!


For this much shaping, I used a heavier dough.  Too stiff for the standing mixer, so I mixed it in the food processor.

For this post though, I will focus on how to shape the challah, rather than on the particular dough recipe.  You can use whatever challah recipe you want for this.

How to Shape a Lulav Challah

1. Make a dough that is enough for two 1 lb. challahs.

2. Use 1/3 dough, cover the rest with plastic wrap to keep it from drying out. Divide the piece into 3 and roll each into a long strand.  Braid it into a tight 3 strand braid.  This will be the main part of the lulav. Place it on a parchment covered baking sheet.

3. Use half of the remaining dough, divide it into 4 balls, with one ball a bit larger than the others.  The large ball will serve as the base of the lulav, so elongate it a little.

4. Shape 2 of the balls into ovoids.  They will go on either side of the braid.  Prick them with a fork to texturize.

5. Shape the last ball into the etrog – a lemon shape with a small stem on the top.

6. With the remaining dough:

– roll out small strands to create the weaving over the base of the lulav.

– Roll out 2 medium-lengths strands, twist them together  and lay them across the top of the base and the bottom of the braid.

– Roll out very thin strands for the branches and tiny balls and ovals for the leaves. These will come out of the tip of the fork-pricked ovoids.

7. Let the dough rise again for another hour or so. Heat oven to 325F

8. Brush with egg wash (beaten egg).

9. Bake for 15 minutes, check how the dough is browning, if it is browning too much, tent the small pieces with foil. Bake for another 15 – 25 minutes, checking after each 10 minutes.

10. Cool on a wire rack.






Categories: Bread, Jewish Holiday, Kosher | Tags: , | 2 Comments

The Challah Project #21 – Sourdough Churek

I have not posted a sourdough recipe in a while. Not to worry, my sourdough starter is alive and thriving, although at times I am sure it feels a little neglected. Many week go by where it just gets fed and returned to the fridge. But this week it was taken out to play!


Aren’t they beautiful? This churek is a Shabbat bread from Rhodes.

I didn’t put sesame seeds on them out of deference to my son, but I wish I had. They would have been even better. But look at this texture…


We are enjoying it with butter and preserves or lemon curd – what a treat for breakfast.


Sourdough Churek

Maggie Glezer A Blessing of Bread


1/3 cup very active fully fermented sourdough starter, refreshed 8 – 12 hours earlier

2/3 cup warm water

2 cups bread flour

Final Dough

2 large eggs, plus 1 for glazing

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 3/4 cup warm water

about 6 cups bread flour

starter (above)

1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp salt


Evening Before Baking – Make the Starter

Knead the starter into the water until it is partially dissolved, then stir in the flour. Knead this firm dough until it is smooth. Remove 1 2/3 cups and place it in  a sealed container at least its 4x its volume, to use in the final dough. Let this ferment until it has tripled in volume and has begun to deflate, 8 – 12 hours.


Baking Day

Make the autolyze – in a large bowl, whisk together the 2 eggs, oil and water, then stir in the flour.  Briefly knead until it is well combined.  Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.


Make the dough – Tear the sourdough starter into about 5 pieces, add it and the salt to the dough, knead them together.


When the mixture is fairly well combined scrape it onto your work surface and knead until the dough is smooth, but no more than 10 minutes. If the dough is too firm, add a Tbsp of water, if it seems too wet, add a Tbsp of flour. The dough should feel soft, stick to itself easily but not to the work surface, and should be easy to knead.

Ferment the dough – Place the dough in a warmed clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough ferment for 2 hours.

Shape and Proof the dough – Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.  Divide the dough in half.  Roll out each half into a rectangle about 1/2 inch thick, using a little flour to help prevent the dough from sticking, if necessary.


Roll each sheet up into a strand about 1 1/2 inches thick and about 30 inches long.


Fold the right 1/3 against the center 1/3, then wrap the left 1/3 around it, creating an elongated spiral. Pinch the end of the spiral to seat lt.


Repeat with the other half and position on the baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap.  Let the loaves proof until tripled in size, up to 5 hours (I let it go 3 hours)


30 minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 400F. Beat the last egg with a little salt and brush on top of the loaves. Place on the center rack of the oven.


Bake – Bake the loaves for 50 – 60 minutes, until very well browned. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!


Makes 2 loaves.

Categories: Bread, Recipe | Tags: | 4 Comments

Challah Project #20 – Caramelized Onion Challah

I was really looking forward to making this challah. One of my strongest memories of my family’s trips to Florida were meals at Pumperniks and Wolfie’s and their amazing bread baskets.  I had 2 favorites – the mini challah braids and the onion challah rolls.

Image from

unattributed image from

So, when making this challah, I couldn’t resist making it as a pull apart so we could have “rolls.”

And they did not disappoint, the flavor was just as I remembered.  With one bite I was transported back to sitting in a booth with my family and eating as many rolls as I could before my parents said “Stop!”

Caramelized Onion Challah

from Tamar Genger on

1 cup warm water

1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast

5 cups Flour

1/2 cup Sugar

1/2 tablespoon salt

1/2 Cup Oil

2 Eggs

1 tablespoon oil

1 large onion, thinly sliced


In a large bowl of a mixer, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add sugar and 11/2 cups flour. Allow to proof for 30 minutes.

After yeast has proofed, with machine on with a dough hook attachment, add salt, oil, beaten eggs, and the rest of the flour one cup at a time. Keep mixer until dough forms a ball, then continue to mix for 5 minutes. Remove dough and place in a large oiled bowl in a warm place. Allow to rise about 1 1/2 hours.

In the meantime, make the onions. In a large saute pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion. Allow to caramelize, stirring occasionally for about 30 minutes until golden and sweet.

Punch down dough and then add the onions and mix in. Allow to sit for another 10 minutes then knead again and begin shaping.

If you want to make a pull apart like the photo, use a round pan, grease and flour, place rolls all around and in the middle.

Allow to rise another hour. Then brush with egg wash.

Bake at 350F for 30 minutes.

Categories: Bread, Recipe | Tags: | 5 Comments

The Challah Project # 19 – Gluten-free Challah

Our daughter was home visiting, so it was time to try a gluten-free challah. I had never done any gluten-free baking, nor had any gluten-free breads that I actually enjoyed. So I searched and searched for a recipe that looked appealing to me,  finally finding one on  I have to say that I am tickled with the result.

Look at this texture, I did not think it was possible with gluten-free.

The dough was so easy to work with, it rolled and braided beautifully.

The success of this challah makes me want to try other gluten-free baking for when either of my two gluten-free daughters are home.

Gluten-Free Challah


1/3 cup warm water

1 package or 2 1/4 tsp rapid rise gf yeast

1 tsp. granulated cane sugar

1 cup vanilla yogurt, at room temperature

1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

5 large egg yolks at room temperature (slightly mixed)

1/3 cup canola oil

4 Tbs. honey, agave nectar or molasses (I used agave)

4 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour

3 Tbs. + 2 tsp. granulated cane sugar

1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. baking soda

2 tsp. gluten-free baking powder

1 large egg, mixed

poppy seeds, sesame seeds, raisins, or other topping or mix-in (optional)


Preheat your oven to 200º F, then turn it off. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, mix together the warm water, yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar to proof the yeast; set aside.

In the bowl of your stand mixer, add the remaining wet ingredients and mix until combined.

Whisk together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl.

After 5 minutes of proofing, stir in the yeast-water mixture into the wet ingredients (note: if your yeast isn’t bubbling at this point, throw it out and start again with fresh yeast).

Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until fully integrated, then mix 2 minutes more on medium speed.

Once the dough is combined, divide it in half and divide each half into three equally-sized balls. The dough will be sticky, so use extra gluten-free flour on your hands and rolling surface. Roll each ball out into an 18-inch coil or log on a clean, flat surface dusted lightly with gluten-free flour. Pinch together one end of each coil, wetting them slightly with water to help them join together at the top, then braid them into a long braid. Gently transfer it to the parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat for the second set of three balls.

In a small bowl, mix the extra egg with some water and brush over each loaf well, coating the entire top surface. Sprinkle the seeds or any toppings at this point, then place the tray into the preheated oven for approximately 20 – 30 minutes. (Don’t expect the bread to rise much at this stage).

Once risen slightly, place the uncovered tray in an oven preheated to 350º F for 20 minutes (mine took 35 minutes). Remove to cool on a wire rack.

Makes 2 challahs

Categories: Bread, Recipe | Tags: | 1 Comment

Chocolate Chip Challah

I had the pleasure of joining almost 200 women and girls at the Mega Challah Bake last week.


What a blast as we mixed, kneaded and braided between 400 and 500 Challahs. Not the most flattering picture, but here I am as I start rolling (is my hair really that red?).


We had out r choice of mix-ins and toppings.  I decided to go “sweet,” mixing in chocolate chips and topping the challot with cinnamon sugar.
I made both a 4-braid (above) and pull-apart knots.  We brought them home uncooked, stuck them in the freezer to bake later.  The also made delicious french toast…always a treat! 

Chocolate Chip Challah

from the Mega Challah Bake

1 1/3 cup warm water

2 1/4 tsp yeast

2 large eggs, separated

1/3 cup oil

1/3 cup sugar

2 tsp salt

4 cups flour

chocolate chips (as much as desired)

cinnamon sugar


Dissolve yeast in warm water with a pinch of sugar.

Add 1 egg, oil, sugar and salt and mix well.

Add flour, 2 cups at a time, and the chocolate chips. Knead well (add extra flour if necessary, up to 1/2 cup).  Cover the dough or place in a plastic bag and let rise for 30 minutes.

Divide and braid the dough, place on a greased pan and brush with the other egg.  Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar on top.

Let rise for another 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350F.

Bake until golden (30-45 minutes). Cool on racks.

 Makes 2 loaves


Categories: Recipe | Tags: | 3 Comments

The Challah Project #17 – Maple Syrup Challah

My Valentine’s Challah is a wonderful blend of two posts from Amanda at TheChallahBlog – her Wisconsin Maple Syrup Challah and Heart-Shaped Challah.

It is funny, when she made the maple syrup challah, she broke with her practice and did an overnight rise, and when I did it, I did a single rise during the day of baking. The yeast bloomed so beautifully, that the single rise worked very well.

Perhaps it was the wonderful syrup I brought back with me from my ski trip to New Hampshire that made the yeast so happy. If so, then they have very good taste indeed.

Braiding the challah was fun.  A bit of trial and error. I wish the sides were a bit more even, bit, it definitely looks like a heart.

Maple Syrup Challah

From The Challah Blog

2/3 cup water
2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
1/4 cup pure maple syrup plus about 1 tbsp more for egg wash
1 egg plus 1 more for egg wash (from Farmer Kim)
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 cup bread flour
1 tsp salt


Proof the yeast with the hot water and maple syrup.  Let rest 10 minutes or until foamy.

Add the egg and oil, mixing gently.  Add the flour and salt.  Knead by hand or with a dough hook until a ball forms.

Let rest in a covered, oiled bowl for about 1 1/2  – 2 hours.
Braid as you desire (I did my Valentine’s Heart).

Mix the beaten egg with about 1 tbsp of maple syrup and brush over the dough. Bake at 350F for 25-30 minutes or until internal temperature reaches at least 180 degrees.   Cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!


Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 4 Comments

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