- Makes three medium sized challot ServingsServings
- I kilo flour, sifted (about 7 cups)
- 50 grams fresh granulated yeast (Shimrit)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- ½ cup canola oil
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- Up to 2 cups warm water
- Egg wash - 1 egg, lightly beaten with a tablespoon of water
Empty all the flour into the mixer bowl. Add in yeast and stir well to combine. Mix in the sugar and salt. Add the oil and eggs. Add about 1 1/4 cups of the water. Use the dough hook to mix. After a minute or two, check to see if the mixture seems dry. If so, add a little more water, up to a total of two cups. Scrape down and continue to mix, kneading the dough for about 10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. You can also do some kneading by hand on a floured surface. Put the dough in a greased bowl, turning to cover all sides. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm spot to rise for 2-3 hours, until doubled. Punch down and divide the dough into 3 parts, then divide each part into as many strands as you would like to braid with.
For a round challah, do not re-divide. Lightly flour your work surface, then pat out each piece into a rectangle. Roll each rectangle up jelly roll style into a long snake. Braid or twist as desired. Place each loaf onto a parchment lined pan and cover loosely with a piece of plastic wrap. Let rise 30-60 minutes, then brush with an egg wash of 1 beaten egg and a tablespoon of water. Bake at 350 (180 C)in the lower half of your oven for about 30 minutes until golden brown and baked through. When you tap on the bottom crust, it should sound hollow. Cool on a rack, and enjoy!
NOTE: Challah cannot be taken from this amount of flour. Double or triple, according to your rav, to take challah with a bracha.
Notes for those in the U.S. - 7 cups of flour to a kilo should work, although weighing out 2.2 pounds would be even better. The challah should work with 5 teaspoons of dry yeast, though I think you have to proof it with some of the water and a little of the sugar. But if you use bread machine yeast, you can probably use the same technique of mixing in with the flour without proofing.
For tips on cooking in Israel (substitutions and conversions) check out my article and let me know how else I can help.