The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Sourdough Challah inspired by David dmsnyder's front page post

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Sourdough Challah inspired by David dmsnyder's front page post

I love challah and have never tried Glezer's sourdough version.  I don't have her book.  I was so inspired by David's post I thought I would attempt it.  I added some golden raisins because I knew my husband would love them in the loaf so I added some to the 3 braided challah.  The round 4 strand loaf is plain but my favorite shape.  I only did a couple of things different.  I used the lesser amount of starter 200 gms.  I hand mixed everything and didn't use a rolling pin in the final shaping..I guess that comes from not ever wanting to use one on my pizza dough.  It took them nearly 6 hours to proof.  It's pouring cats and dogs here and pretty cool in my kitchen today.  I've been out most the day running some errands so the long proofing time worked out perfect.


Here's what I got and I will post a crumb shot a little later when they are cooled.


I also posted J. Hamelman's Country Bread..I think it has a wonderful flavor..maybe it's all that pre-ferment..but it's delicious! 



The Crumb and tasting!  This is a very, very delicious Challah.  The addition of the golden raisins complimented and added to the complex flavor of this bread that my husband and I both love..that little burst in your mouth really is great.



to add the raisins with my hands I shaped the dough into a round flat circle and laid them on top and then rolled the dough up firmly and then rolled and lengthened it into the rope.  When I do this it keeps my raisins from going on the outside of the loaf and burning. 


Sylvia



Jefferey Hamelman's Country Bread   I will definately make this bread again...and with a little more patience..the flavor is very nice!


Sylvia


 


 


 


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Comments

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Your Challah is perfect looking Sylvia. Outstanding!


Eric

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

You set a high mark for us to aim for! I must learn to braid the round shape. I know you've posted directions somewhere.


I'm glad you and your husband liked the sourdough challah. I think it's a truly delicious bread.


David

Marni's picture
Marni

Those Challahs (challot) look amazing!  So delicate inside.  Don't you love that round shape? 


David- here's the link:


http://www.ou.org/shabbat_shalom/article/woven_round_challah/


It's really quite simple once you get going.


Marni

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Eric, David and Marni, for the very nice compliments! 


David, I love the round shape because it's fun and has an easy pattern to follow and makes a nice festive shape.  It also gives you a very nice slice of bread.  I like to make large loaves.  I love the larger braided loaves.  Definition between the braids comes from dryer dough or by adding a little bit of flour on the exterior of the ropes if needed.  Wetter, moister, warmer doughs will blend together with less definition 'my round braided scali tends to be very moist' this helps me control the amount of definition between the ropes and allowing for the oven spring and also like you mentioned, braid loosely.  Fully proofed braided loaves works best for me.


Sylvia

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

When you "add a little bit of flour on the exterior of the ropes," do you do this after rolling them out or after braiding them?


Even though I proofed my loaves 6 hours, they were not tripled as Glezer advised. I probably got the kind of oven spring I did due to under-proofing. The rope definition was super, except the ropes sort of lost their ropiness.


David

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Your welcome, David!  I try not to use any flour on my board or the ropes slip when I'm shaping them and so if they need a little flour I just flour up my hands and run them down the formed ropes and then braid. Here is an example of my ropes starting to 'fuse together'  and could have used a touch or flour in the final shaping of the ropes.  The very top rope and some of the other ropes are fusing to together from the high hydration of the dough and warm kitchen. 


It was hard for me to judge 'tripled' on the loaves.  Mine appeared just a little under tripled. 


 

DonD's picture
DonD

Your Challahs look delicious. Great handiwork on the braiding too.


Don

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Braiding is like getting extra play time with your dough and it's a fun learning experience I enjoy.


Sylvia

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

That round challah looks almost too beautiful to eat, not to disparage the other loaf.


That round loaf looks almost spherical, like it was proofed and baked suspended in mid air? The color is just perfect too. Egg wash?

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

 It amazes me how it comes together so naturally.  The egg wash does add a lovely shine.


Sylvia 

Bixmeister's picture
Bixmeister

Nice Challahs, Sylvia.  Did you use your bread oven?

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

These were baked indoors..it's been pouring rain outside but is beautiful weather for baking outdoors when it's not downpouring.


Sylvia

mrosen814's picture
mrosen814

Gorgeous!!! I love those little bubbles on the crust... :)

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

I'm not sure how those little bubbles came about... : ?  maybe the egg wash, long slow rise in my cold kitchen?


Sylvia 

weavershouse's picture
weavershouse

Just beautiful.


weavershouse

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Thank you, just warming up for some holiday baking..I bet you are too!


Sylvia

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

I have no problem braiding, but I do have a problem getting my strands equal. I do weigh them out, but they just never seem to come out the same. Any tips?


Thanks for the tip on keeping the raisins inside the bread!


I'm getting a late start on my holiday baking..know what we'll both be doing this weekend!


Happy Holidays,


Betty

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

That's what I do to is divide and weigh the dough.  I really don't fuss to much rolling out the rope. Sometimes they may be fatter or thinner but I try to get them all the same length.  It's either all one size or tapered to the tips.  I just sort of let it happen..But one thing I have noticed I do  is..  while rolling out a rope, I can't look at it or it messes me up..I look straight ahead and just feel the rope form..just looking at it to see what part needs evened out.  Kind of weird but that's what I have to do!  When the rope is laid out if there's a spot that needs evened out I just put my palm and a little pressure on it and roll  till it evens out.  As I reach the end of the rope I have worked from my palms to fingers applying more pressure with my finger tips to get the tapered ends.  My back and forth rolling is longest at the center and the distance  shortens a lot as I reach the tapered ends of the rope I used on the 3 braided loaf.   I think a  rope with a fat center and tapered tips makes a nice 3 braid loaf with a full center body and tapered ends.  I hope this makes sense : )  Now close your eyes and roll out a rope ; )


Happy Holidays to You and Yours,


Sylvia 

ensalter's picture
ensalter

your challah looks amazing!


today is my second attempt at yeast-based breads. i am trying a spelt challah, with 3 piece braid. my dough is very slack right now, and it's making me worried for the final product, but i suppose i'll just have to wait and see!


en


 

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Spelt challah sounds wonderful.  I worried about making my sourdough challah and know just how you feel waiting to see the end result! 


Sylvia

ensalter's picture
ensalter

So i pulled my challah out of the oven about 2 hours ago - and it is nearly half gone!!


it turned out MAGICALLY! fluffy, light texture, just enough sweet, nice egg-wash crust... beautiful. Now i'm feeling ambitious, next time i think i'll try a 4 string braid or maybe a 6 string.


my first try baking bread, and i am so happy that the spelt turned out so well! i will be posting pictures soon


en

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

 A successful first time bake, you should be very proud.  Your hooked now!!   Sounds like you have found the fun in braiding.  Keep up the great work. 


Sylvia

ensalter's picture
ensalter