The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Holla for some Challah

restever99's picture

Holla for some Challah

Being Jewish and moving to Salt Lake City was a big shock for me, not in a bad way, just finding other people to share the holidays with is a little tough.  Fortunitly I have a few friends at work who are also Jewish.  Tomorrow we are having a little Rosh Hashanah lunch and I prepared the center piece Challah.  This is from my great grandmothers recipie so I feel very honored to be continuing that tradition.  As always comments, questions, and critique are always welcomed.  Shana Tova!

Elagins's picture

a couple of suggestions:  first, it's appropriate to make a round challah ("shtraymel koyletch) for the high holy days, symbolizing the continuity of life.  Easy to do ... just roll the dough into a single tapered strand and make a spiral, then proof, glaze and bake.

secondly, that three-braid is lovely, and i'd encourage you to learn the four- and six-braids once the holidays have passed.

Shanah Tovah!


Stan Ginsberg

louie brown's picture
louie brown

Challah is just about the only bread I make in the course of a year using commercial yeast. I am a little out of practice with the stuff. Nevertheless, here are my round loaves for this year, some rounder than others:

Happy New Year to all Concerned!

mimifix's picture


Yes, that loaf is beautiful. Stan has a great suggestion about making a round loaf for Rosh Hashanah. I have some hand issues so I no longer do long-rise breads. I like to use my breadmachine for the dough, then shape and bake. See link below for my simple recipe with pictures.

Shana Tova! Mimi

restever99's picture

Thank you for all the comments.  I had intended to join the ends of this loaf, however it wasn't playing along, even after resting, so I left it as it was.

EvaB's picture

And very happy time to you all! I am not Jewish, but certainly like the look of that lovely bread.

I have seen it done in the round, and wondered about the symbolism of it, but since I had no one to ask, just thought it was the way they did it! Guess I was right, but it does have a reason, so that is also nice to know.


UnConundrum's picture

It's also "traditional" to put a bird or ladder made out of a scrap of dough on the round challah to symbolize an effort to reach higher goals in the coming year.  I forgot to take pictures of mine this year.... sorry :(


But I agree with everyone else, that's a beautiful braid :)


Here's a picture from a  previous year where you can just barely see the birds:

mrosen814's picture

beautiful challah! would you mind sharing the recipe??

UnConundrum's picture

Sure, I have 3 recipes, scaled differently.  The first will make about 8 2# challas and requires a 20qt mixer :


The second is a no-knead version that makes 3 2.5# challahs, if my memory serves me:


And the third is a quick one loaf version for when I just have a hankerin for challah.  It is made in a ThermoMix but you could use a food processor just as easily:


Procedure varies on all three but the ingredients are proportional.  IOW, they are essentially the same challah, just made 3 different ways.  Hope one of the recipes works for you :)

joyfulbaker's picture

Congratulations, restever99, for making that centerpiece challah.  It's lovely and looks delish.  Good luck in your new city.  If I ever figure out how to put my photos on this website, I'd be happy to share pictures.  This year I tried Hamelman's Winston knot pattern for my holiday challah, and it made a "round" challah that actually looked more like a crown.  Now for those instructions . . .  Help!


Amori's picture

It looks great Restever! I had 'crowning' problem with a vanilla challah [spiral] as well, perhaps we are rolling it too tight?

A friend came over last week, we made Apple Honey Challah w/o butter/milk , it was delish, rustic looking due to the turbanado sugar and egg yolk was. Nothing beats french toast made with challah imho.




Amori's picture

Really pretty Restever! I also had 'crowning' issue with the spiral version, maybe I rolled too tight w/o room to grow?  I made Apple-Honey challah last week, it came out quite rustic with the turbanado, best french toast ever........

actiontoo's picture

Those are great looking breads.  I made some challah last week and they came out great. I plan to bake some more for Friday night.

I want to make the dough ahead and let it slow rise overnight. Any tips?


BellesAZ's picture

I think moving to Salt Lake would be a big cultural shock for alot of us!  No offense, and I suppose it is what you make it to be.  I wish you luck in that.  I am not sure that I could do it without some "adjusting" on my part.  I admire you being there!  There are some Jewish groups like and maybe a couple of others. 

Maybe find a bread bakers guild or some other commonalities too.  Salt Lake is a wonderful city and it is breathtakingly beautiful with alot to offer.  I hope you experience it to its fullest and reach out to the entire community for friendship. 

You are also in the heart of baking country where baking is a way of life, and MANY women do it.  Lucky you - maybe you'll find a better supply of good grains, etc.  Also, I think you're fairly close to Honeyville Grains - the mill at least. 

joyfulbaker's picture

Hi restever99,

Just remembered that, when we were vacationing near Salt Lake, we stopped at Lehi and went into the store at Lehi Roller Mills.  I bought some Turkey red bread flour there--it's terrific.  And there are lots of other goodies that Lehi sells, pancake mix, brownie mix--they all looked good.