The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Purple Challah Twist Braid

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verminiusrex's picture
verminiusrex

Purple Challah Twist Braid

 Purple Challah Twist Bread.  I did up 2 half batches of challah dough, to half I added purple yam powder that does nothing but dye the dough, cut each batch into 3 strips after the first rise, twised opposite colors together into 3 ropes, braided and put Purple Challah Twist Braid: Purple Challah Twist Bread. I did up 2 half batches of challah dough, to half I added purple yam powder that does nothing but dye the dough, cut each batch into 3 strips after the first rise, twised opposite colors together into 3 ropes, braided and put 

 


weavershouse's picture
weavershouse

I can't imagine how you made that braid but it's beautiful.                  weavershouse

verminiusrex's picture
verminiusrex

Just twist together the two colors of dough for the ropes (looks like candy canes), then use the 3 ropes to make a straight braid.  Tuck the ends under when you put it in the pan, it's the great equalizer that makes the braid look nice and neat.

 Someday I'll learn how to do a 4 strand braid.

andrew_l's picture
andrew_l

looks beautiful! What hydration was the dough - does it need to be fairly dry to manage to braid it like that?
Andrew

verminiusrex's picture
verminiusrex

When it's in the pan the hydration doesn't matter quite as much since the walls hold the dough in so it can move up but not out, but by it's nature challah does have a slightly dryer feel than my typical bread dough.  When I did some freestanding 1/2 lb loaves, I did notice that more kneading after the first rise but before shaping the dough made the dough stiffer, so it held it's shape while bench proofing and baking.

 Basic ingredient list

1.5 lbs bread flour

1.5 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon instant yeast 

2 jumbo eggs (1/2 cup)

3 Tablespoons oil

1 teaspoon vanilla (important for the flavor, believe me)

9 oz water

 Knead, proof until doubled, knead and shape, proof 1-2 hours, bake 350 for 40-50 minutes for a loaf, 375 for 15-25 minutes for smaller loaves or rolls.  

 It's a forgiving recipe, once I was delayed and it bench proofed 3 hours before baking, the only difference was it was fluffier.  It holds it's structural integrity pretty well.   I've even added 1/3 cup powderd cocoa and 3 oz melted semisweet chips to one, and spices (cinnamon, nutmeg and clove) and raisin to another with good results, it doesn't fall apart when you tinker with the recipe a bit.