Breads | Challah Bread
Posted on June 8, 2013
I want to learn how to make bread. At least that's what I keep telling myself and then I don't do it. Too many months go by so that anything that I learned is forgotten. Well, I'm doing it again. Learning to make bread. I started out with this one since the dough is made in the bread machine. Gets you half way there, then just shape, rise, and bake.
Yield: one 12-15" loaf
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon barley malt
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons honey
1 ounce unsalted butter (2 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
12 1/2 ounces unbleached bread flour (2 1/2 cups)
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 egg combined with 2 tablespoon water (egg wash)
poppy or sesame seeds, if desired
Place the water, barley malt, egg, egg yolk, honey, butter, salt, flour, and yeast in order in the bread machine pan. Set the machine for the "dough" cycle.
When the dough cycle is finished, transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and form a braid (see below). Cover and allow the braid to rise until it is 1 1/2 times original bulk, 30 minutes to 1 hour. (Cover with a floured towel while rising.)
Preheat the oven to 375°. Brush the top and sides of the braid with the egg wash, sprinkle with seeds if desired, and bake for 25 minutes or until the braid is golden brown and sounds hollow when thumped. Cool on a wire rack before slicing.
HOW TO FORM A BRAID
Cut the dough into three pieces of equal size. Roll each piece into a rope, 12 to 15 inches long. Taper the ends and lay the ropes side by side on an oiled baking sheet or Silpat. Starting in the middle, braid the ropes, tucking the ends under. Now rotate the dough, bringing the unbraided half nearer your hands, and braid the second half the same way as the first.
(Ref. "Braided Egg Bread (Challah)" recipe, Home Chef's "Bread Machine" cooking class.)