This Challah Rolls recipe is an excellent bread recipe for your family. Challah pronounced as 'halla' and meaning any bread, is an outstanding piece of culinary art that any passionate bread maker is attracted to!
You will likely find Challah bread rolls on the table during major Jewish celebrations. During Rosh hashanah, which marks the end and beginning of the year in the Jewish calendar, the strands are braided, and a beautiful round-shaped bread is formed.
The round ball Challah symbolizes various reasons, among them the cycle of years and seasons that never ends. For Shabbat dinner, on the other hand, it is made into oval braided loaves of bread.
It is customary to bake two oval-shaped pieces of bread, which symbolize the double portion of manna that fell from heaven during the wanderings of the Jewish people in the wilderness.
This Challah bread recipe stood out to my family. We love homemade bread because of its flavor, and we'll try it from our latest recipe book in our international collection.
Let us briefly discuss the ingredients that make this outstanding, aromatic challah buns.
Wheat flour is the primary ingredient in this challah recipe; we used all-purpose white flour, which can be substituted with whole wheat flour or spelt flour, making it more nutritious, or you could use gluten-free flour for those on the keto diet.
Challah dinner rolls are specially enriched with eggs and the right amount of oil. The traditional recipe calls for olive oil; it is originally a non-dairy bread. You can use neutral-flavored oils such as deodorized Canola oil.
If you are not observing Jewish traditions, you can use butter in place of vegetable oil. Honey is an unrefined nutritious sweetener that is high in moisture content, although you can substitute it with brown sugar.
In this recipe, we used a type of modern yeast: instant (dry) yeast. We skipped the water activation step, where you prepare a yeast mixture with water and some sugar before mixing the ingredients. However, you can also use active dry yeast as an alternative.
Braiding the piece of dough is the fun part of this recipe, a technique that distinguishes Challah from all other loaves of bread. The beautiful lumps with a shiny finesse are definitely eye-catching to any viewer.
In this recipe, we shall be braiding the two major styles, dividing the dough into two equal parts. Weigh the two parts on the kitchen scale to equal portions.
Oval shaped Challah
On a clean working surface that's lightly floured, begin your creativity. With a bench scraper, divide this piece of challah dough into four equal pieces.
Let the challah dough proof in a warm place for a minute or two to relax. This period prevents tearing as you begin to roll out the ropes.
After the dough rises, carefully roll each piece of the Challah dough into four long ropes, about 30 cm each.
Hold the ends of the four challah knot rolls together by sticking the dough. Start braiding from the farthest end as you move towards you.
Step 1: Label your strands 1, 2,3 and 4
Step 2: As you move towards the left: take strand number 1 and put it over strand number 2 and 3, then under strand number 3.
Step 3: Now moving toward the right, take strand number 4 and move it over strand number 2 and strand number 3, then place it under strand number 3.
Step 4: Repeat the same process, moving to the left as you remember it's over two strands, then place it under the second one. You can audibly say, "over two, then under one."
Once you reach the end, gently pinch the end of the strands and tuck them in under the challah bread.
With uttermost care, carry the oval Challah onto a prepared baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Separate the egg yolk from the whole egg and mix it with two tablespoons of water; the mixture will appear pale yellow. Keep the egg white for another recipe. Using a fine brush, apply the egg to the entire Challah. Cover with a clean, light kitchen towel and set aside for the second rise or proofing. If your kitchen is as cold as ours, preheat the oven, then switch it off. Place the Challah in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes.
Round shaped Challah
To make this gorgeous piece of culinary art, braid as described above. This process should be easy now. Add in some raisins as you work on the round Challah, ensuring they are not visible on the top as they tend to burn first during baking.
In a spiral motion, start working from the center, moving outwards, then tucking in the ends. Carefully move the loaf on the baking tray, leaving it about 5 inches from the oval Challah, or preferably use another baking tin.
Brush with egg white, coating all the lumps on the round shaped buns.
After coating the challahs with the egg wash, you can sprinkle sesame seeds or poppy seeds.
Other challah shapes
Do not be restricted to the oval and round braided styles that require a good amount of time to braid. You can shape Challah into mini Challah rolls,large rolls, Challah knots rolls or bread rolls.
If you are making big Challah loaves and some dough remains, you can use the remaining dough to make shaped buns. The enriched dough produces fluffy rolls too!
Let the braided or shaped Challah dough rise to about twice the size: this should take about 45 minutes, depending on the temperature of your kitchen. Add some extra proofing minutes for the round Challah.
Preheat oven for about 10 minutes to a temperature of about 150 degrees Celsius.
Baking the Challah
On the lower rack, place some water in an oven-proof dish. The steam from this water will give the Challah a soft crust.
In the middle rack of the oven, carefully put the Challah into the oven. I call them babies at this point because any rough handling, for instance, if you accidentally hit the tray on the sides of the oven, will cause the Challah to deflate! Oh, we don't want that.
Let the Challahs bake for twenty to twenty-five minutes. Check on the loaves after the timer rings, and the Challah should sound hollow when tapped and spring back when tapped on the top. Use a long spatula to check the bottom part of each Challah.
The crust should have a slightly dark hue of golden brown.
Once the Challahs are baked, remove them from the oven and place them on a cooling rack.
Trust me; the results are worth your effort.
This bread is best for celebrations because of its extraordinary beauty, aroma, and exquisite taste. Only the leftovers should be used for sandwiches or toast.
Use a sharp knife to slice the dough ball or tear apart the bread!
For beginners in breadmaking, it is advisable to practice braiding beforehand. You can use play dough or simple wheat dough.
This will enable you to move swiftly and enjoy the braiding. So, how about practicing various braiding techniques before?
If you have company in the kitchen, invite them to assist you in braiding the second Challah as you work on the first for the first time. This can be so much fun and engrossing for children. Especially those boys who love wheat, lol. After all, tradition has it that two challahs are placed on the table during Shabbat.
Lastly, if you want to braid a more beautiful round challah, make longer ropes in length. The longer the ropes,the more the lumps and the prettier the loaf.
Challah Rolls Recipe
- Mixing bowls
- Kitchen towels
- Pastry brush
- Baking trays
- Baking sheets
- 500 grams All-purpose flour
- 3 Large Eggs
- 1 Egg yolk
- 10 grams Instant yeast
- 15 grams Kosher salt or regular salt.
- 50 grams Honey
- 75 grams Olive oil
- 250 milliliters Warm Water
- Weigh the bread flour, salt, yeast, and on the kitchen scale. Begin by putting the flour in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer and adding the yeast and salt on the opposite side of the bowl. Use a kitchen scale instead of cup measurements for accurate measurements of ingredients.
- Put the bowl on the stand mixer, ensure the dough hook attachment is in place, and put it on the mixer at moderate speed. This step ensures all the dry ingredients mix uniformly.
- Switch off the mixer, remove the mixing bowl and create a hole at the center of the flour mixture with a spatula. Add in the warm water, whole eggs, and honey. Return the mixing bowl to the stand mixer.
- Mix at medium-low speed until a soft dough begins to form; add in the olive oil and let the stand mixer knead the dough for about fifteen minutes.
- The dough should be soft and slightly sticky but easy to work with.
- Transfer the dough onto a clean work surface that is sprinkled with flour and give it a little hand kneading; form a tight ball by tucking in the center and gently toss the Challah dough into an oiled bowl and cover it with a damp towel.
- Let the dough rest for an hour and a half or two hours at room temperature for the first rise. The time it takes to rise depends on how warm your kitchen is. You can place your dough in the refrigerator and cover it with a plastic wrap or in an airtight container. Let it rise overnight for baking the next morning.
- When the dough is twice the size, turn it onto a floured surface and punch down to remove the air or, better said, carbon dioxide.
- Using a bench scraper, divide dough according to the braiding style you are planning to make.
My answer is yes! A bread machine is an excellent appliance as it mixes the ingredients, kneads, proofs, and bakes the bread for you.
Hassle-free! All this is done in a single time. It is suitable when you're baking one loaf of bread.
However, I prefer the versatility of the stand mixer. You can fix whatever hook and mix various recipes. The bread
machine limits you to baking one loaf at a time, and just in case your loaf is too big, it will not fit in the bread machine.
As a home cook, I struggled with the issue of dryness in all the bread recipes I attempted to make! It is frustrating! Challah should be moist by all means, you know! ..please resist adding flour when working on the Challah dough. Its Ok for the challah dough to be tacky, with
practice you learn to handle sticky dough. Grease your hands any time things get sticky.
Challah bread has enriched dough with eggs. Eggs give Challah a pillow-soft interior, and the egg wash completes the exterior with a characteristic glossy sheen.
In place of butter, olive oil is used, giving it an earthy flavor.