I am a newlywed on a budget, just trying to make healthy and inexpensive meals for my husband and I to enjoy. He eats a lot, so cost is a big factor. Though I work 3 jobs, I manage to find time 6 nights a week to cook a full dinner for us both. I am constantly looking for new recipes that are moderately healthy, taste great, and won't break the bank.

On the side, I also own a brownie business called Gersheybars. My passion and love for cooking started when I was just a small child, baking with my mom and grandmother. The brownie recipe has been passed down through 5 generations and I am thrilled to finally have an outlet to share them with everybody else. Friends and family have helped spread the word and made my business as successful as it is today.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Poppyseed Challah

It's been a while since I've made any bread, but I definitely miss it. This Challah recipe isn't quite as tender as a traditional loaf (it's slightly on the dense side), but it's sweet, and eggy, and very good for sandwiches, french toast, or just snacking! You can top it with just about anything. I made 2 loaves -- one topped with poppyseeds, and one topped with Kosher salt. You can also add golden raisins for added sweetness.

  • 2.5 cups warm water (110 degrees - be careful it's not too hot, or it will kill the yeast)
  • 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 whole eggs, plus 4 yolks
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 8 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 Tablespoon water for eggwash
  • 1 Tablespoon poppyseeds or sesame seeds for topping
  1. Pour water in mixing bowl, and sprinkle yeast on top. Mix in honey, oil, eggs and yolks until well combined.
  2. Add 2 cups flour, and salt, and mix with dough hook until combined. Continue adding flour, 1 or 2 cups at a time, until dough comes together and forms a tight ball. Knead with hook about 7 minutes on speed 2 or 3, until smooth and shiny.
  3. Remove hook from bowl, shape dough into a neat round ball and place back in bowl, covered with a damp cloth, for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  4. Cut dough into 2 equal pieces (recipe yields 2 loaves). For a 6 stranded braid, cut each equal piece into 6 pieces. I found this video on YouTube that describes how to do a 6-strand braid very clearly. If you don't feel comfortable, just do a 3 strand braid.
  5. Spray parchment with non-stick spray, and place braided loaf on greased parchment. Allow to rise an additional 20 minutes. Brush with eggwash and sprinkle poppyseeds, sesame seeds, or the topping of your choice on the bread. Bake at 375 for 40 minutes, until golden brown.

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