Who doesn't love a beautifully plaited or braided Challah (also known as Kitke or Kitka)? This traditional Jewish bread is enriched with eggs, oil, and sugar and has just the right amount of sweetness.
Challahs are best eaten the day they were baked - but leftover bread (if any!!) may be used to make gourmet French toast or a comforting bread pudding.
This is the final recipe in the Sourdough September Challenge of 2021. Enjoy!
250g ripe starter (liquid starter)
435g AP or white bread flour
20g lukewarm water (add a little extra water only if needed)
2 eggs + one yolk
55-60g sunflower oil
1 egg (for the egg wash)
1) Combine all the wet ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
2) Add the flour, sugar, and salt.
3) Bring all the ingredients together into a sticky yet manageable dough (if the dough is too dry, slowly add a little water until a firm but tacky consistency is reached.)
4) Knead the dough on your countertop for 10-15 minutes until smooth and no longer sticky. The key is to develop gluten strength and elasticity.
5) Place the dough back in the bowl and allow to rise in a warm (but not hot) area for approximately 4 hours.
6) Divide the dough in half. Divide each half into 3 or 4 equal pieces and roll into ropes.
7) Braid/plait the ropes into three or four strand braids and place on a baking sheet lined with baking paper.
8) Lightly brush a piece of clingwrap with oil and place it over the braided dough.
9) Allow the shaped loaves to prove for an additional 5 hours.
10) Pre-heat the oven to 177 degrees C or 350 degrees F.
11) Whisk the remaining egg and brush the loaves all over.
12) Sprinkle sesame or poppy seeds over the top and bake for 25-35 minutes.
13) Allow the Challah to cool off completely before slicing.
Babette's Bread Ltd.