Rosh Hashanah – Challah
While I am a confirmed atheist, I do enjoy the food aspects of holidays, religious or otherwise, from many different cultures. Besides which, my BFF and my brother-in-law are both Jewish, so I have a special place for Jewish holidays in my world. Monday was Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year. While apples and honey are traditional for the holiday, I decided (after consultation with my BFF) that this was the perfect reason to make challah. I love challah so much, but have never gotten around to making it myself. So finally I felt motivated enough.
1 package yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1/4 cup sugar
2 1/4 cups flour
1/4 cup butter, softened
In a large bowl, place the warm water. Dissolve the sugar and yeast. Add 3/4 cup flour and blend thoroughly. Let the yeast mixture proof for about 15-20 minutes. Add the egg and the butter and mix those in. Then add a cup or so of flour and mix it in. Keep adding flour a little at a time while you mix and start to knead the dough, until its no longer sticky. Keep kneading til the dough becomes elastic. Cover and let the dough double in size, like an hour and a half. Once the dough has doubled in size, punch it down, and divide the dough into thirds. Roll each third into a rope of roughly the same size. Braid the ropes together (Here’s a good visual on braiding challah). Once you’ve braided the challah, stick it on a lightly-greased baking sheet and let it rise again, for about an hour. Bake at 35 for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown, and enjoy!
The recipe was awesome! Perhaps not quite as good as when I’ve bought challah from the grocery store, but hey, it was my first try with this. I also think I’m going to try for a little less sugar next time I make this. Also there is an onion variation I now want to try as well. Since apples are a thing for this holiday, I had the challah (and the casserole I made for dinner) with hard cider. Now that it’s basically fall, hard cider is something I drink a lot. Song of the week: You’re A Better Man Than I by The Yardbirds. One of the great, under-appreciated 60s rock bands, the Yardbirds launched Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck’s careers. This is one of my favorite songs by them.