Sunday, August 17, 2008

Challah Bread using Bread Machine Dough Setting

Braided Challah Bread
· 3 cups bread flour
· 1/4 -1/3 cup sugar
· 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
· 1 egg
· 1/4 cup oil
· 1 1/4 cup warm water
· 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (or 1 package)
1. Place the ingredients into the bread machine. Set on dough cycle. 2. Divide dough in half for two loaves. Then divide each loaf into 3 or 4 strands and braid. 3. Cover the loaves with tea towels or non-terry cloth dish towels. Leave them to rise for at least one hour. I put my loaves in my oven with just the interior light on. 4. Remove loaves from oven. Brush with beaten egg. Bake at 325-350 degrees for 25 minutes for two loaves (slightly longer for one loaf). TIPS: To check that the challah is done baking, gently knock on the bottom of it. A hollow sound means the challah is ready.
Braiding Four-Strand Challah
1. Divide dough into 4 equal parts.
Knead each part into a smooth ball and roll each ball into a ropelike strand. Lay the strands side by side and pinch together at the top.
2. Grasp the leftmost strand and pass it to the right, under the two
strands adjacent to it, and then back toward the left, over one strand (the one closest to it now).
3. Grasp the rightmost strand and pass it to the left, under the two strands adjacent to it (which have already been braided), and then back to the right, over one strand.
4. Alternately repeat steps 2 and 3.5. When done braiding, pinch the ends of the strands together.

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