Does anyone else feel like time is speeding up? It seems like the older I get the less time I have. The funny thing is that I always think it will get better later. Like somehow I can finish and catch up. Nope, doesn’t happen. When you are little time seems to drag on forever like it will never end. There are days spent just waiting for the time to pass until something exciting happens and thinking you really may die before it does. Then you grow up and realize why all those adults seemed so frantic and scattered to you. Who knew you could have so many thoughts going through your mind at one time. I have a whole new appreciation for my parents these days. Forget about controversy over time travel possibilities, I’m doing it everyday. Somehow I go from 8 am to 8 pm in about 5 minutes. Quick, somebody document this! Get all of scientific community on the phone and tell them that we have proof! Time travel is real people!
Bread-making may seem like a long project to some but for me it seems to take no time at all (time-traveller here). So making this Challah bread is no exception. Challah bread is basically just a lightly sweet bread with eggs. It has two rise times that help the yeast to develop and gives the bread awesome flavor. It gets related to Jewish holidays most of the time but it is not strictly Jewish. Yes, it is eaten at many Jewish holidays like Hanukkah and the name Challah is Jewish but it is also eaten in many different cultures that have their own names for it. The braiding gives the bread an artistic look that is sure to impress and the texture is so fluffy.
This bread is good straight out of the oven, with butter slathered all over, or for sandwiches. It is pretty much just good. Everyone knows that it is good leftover for bread pudding and french toast but, what I can’t figure out is how they have any leftover in the first place. They must be speaking theoretically.
- 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 - 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 cup lukewarm water
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 3 eggs, one separated
- 1/4 cup oil
- In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast in the water and let sit for about 5 minutes. Mix in flour and salt. Add honey, 2 eggs and 1 yolk (save the white for eggwash), and oil.
- Knead the dough for 6 - 8 minutes then put in an oiled bowl and cover. Put in warm place to rise for about 1 1/2 hours until doubled in size.
- Now the fun part. First decide how many strands you want your braid to be. I did a 4 stranded braid. On a lightly floured surface divide dough into strands and braid all the way down. For a four stranded braid, number each strand 1 to 4 from left to right. Cross 2 over 1, 4 over 3, then 1 over 4. Renumber strands and repeat. Follow this pattern all the way down. Press the ends together with the palm of your hand. Then place hands at both ends a push the loaf together slightly to make it more of a loaf.
- Cover again and place in warm place to rise until it is really big, about 1 hour.
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Brush the egg white mixed with 1 tablespoon of water over the bread with paintbrush or basting brush. Be sure to get in all the cracks. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes until very golden brown.