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March 03, 2008

First challah

Food and cooking

Last week I was reading about various teachings on the observance of the Lord's Day (more about that later, perhaps), which led me into reading about Jewish Shabbat practices, which made me want to learn to bake challah. The booklet that came with my bread machine had a recipe; the machine did the dough part and then I took it out to shape and bake. Here's the result:

My first challah

Honestly, I don't know if it's "right" because I've rarely tasted challah before, but it's yummy! I think the top is a bit browner than it's supposed to be, because I was having oven temperature regulation issues. Overall, though, I think it was quite a successful experiment.

Posted by Kat at March 3, 2008 04:15 PM

I think it looks great. I love challah! I've been wanting to try sourdough myself. I just need to get a starter going.

Posted by: Courtney at March 3, 2008 07:57 PM

Looks about the right brownness. Did you brush it with egg to make the top shiny? That also give the crust a more sunstantial texture, I think. Challah should have a yellowish color inside, and a bit more flavor from the added egg than white bread would have. It's very good with butter on it. The last time I made it, the recipe I used came out sweet, which IMHO is *not* right. But we have so much variation between different traditions (say, Polish, Ukrainian or Litvak Jews) that maybe it was someone else's version of "right".

One time we were over at someone's house and she served us the challah that she baked as a hobby, in different shapes and some with sweet or savorytoppings (not traditional, but an interesting idea. I didn't even register what the toppings were until my (non-Jewish) husband pointed at the one with bacon bits on it and whispered to me, "They must be Reform Jews!" Not laughing out loud was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do!

Posted by: dichroic at March 4, 2008 07:46 AM

Looks good, Kate! It makes great French toast too.

Posted by: Dad at March 4, 2008 02:19 PM

Three words: Challah. French. Toast.

You will absotively give thanks to god.

Posted by: Eliz at March 4, 2008 06:54 PM

I agree, that's the usual brownness of challah I've had. And everyone is right, challah french toast is about the best thing *ever*.

Posted by: yarnlibrarian at March 5, 2008 06:07 PM

The challah looks okay to me. IMHO, challah should be slightly sweet (it's for Shabbat after all) and have a nice chewy texture and large crumb. How was it inside?

Oh, and I give another vote for making french toast with leftovers.

Posted by: MerryGentlemen at March 10, 2008 12:34 PM
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