This year, Thanksgiving and Chanukah (or Hanukkah) fall at the same time. Everybody is really excited about Thanksgivukkuh, and we’re no different. Apparently, the two holidays won’t coincide for another 70,000 years or something! Of course Jewish Americans everywhere are eager to celebrate! Continue reading
I love baking challah. When I taught 3-year-olds, I baked it with them every week. That made me an expert on kneading the dough by hand and knowing what it should feel like before setting it aside to rise. I still occasionally baked challah, in big batches and small ones, and always by hand.
Last year I got one of the greatest presents ever for my birthday: a Bosch Universal Plus mixer! It is THE ultimate kitchen toy for bread making. Just throw the wet ingredients in the bowl, top with flour, and mix. There was a bit of a learning curve using a machine vs. my hands to make the dough. I never knew how long to mix and stopped the mixer every few seconds till I thought it felt right. I actually still do that sometimes, since bread baking is different based on the weather, your mood, and just about anything. Continue reading
It’s a tradition to eat round challah during the holidays to symbolize a repetitive cycle – the end of an old one and the beginning of a new one. Usually people add some sweetness to the challah with raisins, and instead of dipping it in salt, as we dip it in sugar (or honey). I skipped the raisins – a lot of my guests don’t like raisins – but made sure to use plenty of sugar.
This challah was definitely a special one. I’ve been practicing the six-strand braid and got really good at it, but have never braided a round one. It came out really pretty. I also made it dairy, since we were having dairy for the second day of rosh hashanah. Instead of the usual oil and water, I used milk and butter, which I thought would add a delicious flavor. Continue reading
After many years of finding challah recipes from books, cookbooks, and online, I finally found the best recipe. My cousin Sally gave it to me a while ago, but I was skeptical to use a recipe that used an entire 5-pound bag of flour. It was worth it; everyone at the shabbat table loved it, and there were no leftovers.