Monday, September 1, 2008

Doris Koplin's Sweet Challah

For better or for worse, my week babysitting my nieces is over. It was a long week but in the end I'm glad that I was able to help and bond with my sister and nieces. I spent the weekend with my parents in upstate New York but not before baking some challah (don't worry, I stole some to try!) and apple pie for my sister. I told you this wouldn't be the last time you saw challah on my blog, and this probably isn't either. As for the apple pie, that's for an upcoming post. I frequently like to experiment with new recipes and I decided to oblige my brother-in-law MD this time who likes his challah on the sweeter, eggier side. Of course I turned to A Blessing of Bread (and you should too), my challah bible, if you will. This recipe I'm referring to is Doris Koplin's Sweet Challah. I doubled the small batch as a five pound recipe would have been way too much for her small family. I made the dough Thursday night and allowed it to rise overnight. I got up early Friday morning to braid and bake, which worked great as the dough rose perfectly and I didn't have to worry about it. The challah ended up being a lovely shade of yellow from the yolks, with a nice, soft, golden crust and a nice crumb. I was won over by this recipe even though I'm not much of an egg challah girl. It was sweet but not too sweet, eggy but not too eggy. I kept marvelling about how good it was. A great balance, really. A definite keeper for me. I made three large breads, two four stranded and one five, and four rolls, but the yield all depends on how you choose to shape them.
Doris Koplin's Sweet Challah
A Blessing of Bread

1 tbsp plus 1/4 tsp instant yeast
3 3/4 cups bread flour
3/4 cup warm water
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup sugar The yeast hydrating in the water. This time, I used active dry yeast.
The yeast mixture and all of the other ingredients.
Everything whisked together.
The batter starting to come together...
The dough resting.
The dough ready for its overnight rest.
The dough beautifully risen.

The large breads braided and ready for proofing.
The rolls shaped and ready for proofing.
Baked and beautiful #1.

Baked and beautiful #2.
Check out this week's Yeastspotting over at Wild Yeast Blog. Enjoy!


Ari (Baking and Books) said...

Beautiful braids! Really, really lovely, and I bet they tasted fantastic.

Jude said...

Very cool step by step. Wish I could get over my fear of braiding dough.

Susan said...

Your braids are just perfect. I've never been able to do a 4-braid like that!

Elie S said...

Have you found a resource for bread flour in Israel?
I've only seen the regular flour 2kg bags there.