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.
- 5-pound bag of flour
- 3 tablespoons salt (i always use kosher salt)
- 2 cups warm water + 2-1/4 cups
- 3 packages of yeast
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup oil
- 1 egg+splash of water for eggwash
- Mix one bag of flour with 3 tablespoons of salt (do NOT use sour salt, as my mom once did, and ruined the entire batch)
- in a separate bowl, combine 2 cups of warm water, 3 packages of yeast, and 2 tablespoons of sugar – mix and let bubble
- In the flour mixture, add 2 eggs, 1 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of oil, 2-1/4 cups warm water and the yeast mixture. Mix and then knead well, for 8-10 minutes. I kneaded the dough by hand, but you can use a stand mixer (ours came the next day). Shape into a ball and cover with oil, let it rise for 1-1/2 hours in a warm place.
- Punch down the dough and shape it, then let it rise another 1/2 hour – hour. Brush with eggwash and bake for 20-30 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
- I like to braid my challah in 6-strand braids, i think it looks the prettiest. shaping the dough like this definitely takes a lot of practice. I found a lot of written directions on how to do it when i first wanted to learn, but couldn’t follow any of them. I finally figured it out by watching this video.
This recipe makes a LOT of challah, so it’s a good thing it freezes well. let cool completely, wrap in paper and wrap that with tinfoil, then freeze. Take one out every week, defrost, and warm in the oven (350 degrees for about 1o minutes), and you have a fresh challah for the dinner table. Challah makes the best french toast bread, so make extra large loaves for some sunday morning breakfast.