Sunday, April 19, 2009

I Ain't no Challah Back Girl!

Well....actually today I was! I was a Challah Girl today. that funny? I am trying my hand at being funny here, work with me!

This weeks TWD (Tuesdays with Dorie) recipe is for Chocolate Bread Pudding (YUM!!!) and the recipe calls for Challah or Brioche bread. So rather than go and buy a (usually) expensive loaf of bread I thought I would try my hand at some bread again. I was a little discouraged by my earlier attempts this week - I didn't blog it because it didn't turn out very tasty. But not this time.....It ROCKS! It is so delish. I had a thin slice with some butter to taste test it.... and Jakob had it with Nutella. Jakob's verdict was that it was super yummy mummy! I also made the boys grilled cheeses with it for dinner. It also took everything in me to make the pork chops I had planned for dinner rather than the whole family having grilled cheeses!

Side note....check out Jen's blog Piccante Dolce for recipes and ideas for this month...which happens to be Grilled Cheese month! Bizarre, right? But who doesn't love a good grilled cheese?

But I digress.....

Here is the Recipe courtesy of Sur la Table's...Art and Soul of Baking (Jason ordered it for me as a belated Valentine's gift)

Makes 1 loaf....a yummy loaf
3/4 c warm water
2 TBSP honey
1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
2 large eggs, at room temp.
3 TBSP canola or safflower oil
2 1/2 c bread flour or all purpose flour
3/4 tsp salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tsp poppy seeds (optional - and I opted out)

1. Combine the warm water and honey in the bowl of the stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast over the top. Whisk by hand to blend well. Let the mixture sit for 5 - 10 minutes, until the yeast activates. Add the eggs and oil and whisk together. Stir in the flour and salt. Attach the dough hook and knead on low speed for 2 min. Turn the speed to medium and knead for another 6 to 8 minutes, until dough is smooth, silky and elastic. I found it to be a little sticky and added a little more flour, but it stayed sticky!

2. Lightly oil a tub or bowl. Scrape the dough into the tub and brush the surface with a little oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let the dough rise until doubled in size, approx 45 - 60 min. My mother always told me to put the bread in the oven with the light on to create a nice warm draft free place for the dough to rise!

3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Press down on the dough firmly to expel some of the air bubbles, but don't knead the dough again. Divide the dough into three pieces. Work with one piece at a time and roll it gently into a rope about 15 inches long.

4. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat and lay the three ropes on the sheet with ends facing you. Pinch together the three ends furthest away from you. Braid the dough, pinching the loose ends together at the bottom. Tuck the ends under just slightly.

5. Cover the braid with plastic wrap or the damp towel again. Allow the braid to rise until it is almost double in size again.

6. Preheat the oven to 375F and position an oven rack in the center. Gently brush the braid with the beaten will not use all of it. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes until the top and bottom are golden brown. Transfer to rack to cool completely.

7. Then wait as long as you can before digging into the loaf and eating it all up!!

We didn't wait very long...just til it was cool enough to cut! I don't think there is enough to make a full recipe of the Chocolate Bread Pudding so I think I will be halving that recipe this week! LOL!

Here is what the end result looks like......

There will definitely be more of this bread being made in our house...we all loved it. And it was so easy! Thank goodness!

Come back on Tuesday (Wait!!! Come back every day!!!) to see the bread pudding I am making with this loaf.

And also stay tuned for the giveaway I am putting together....going to be a good one, my first one!

Take care,

Tania Love Big, Bake Often


Team Wallace said...

Challah Back're punny!

Maria said...

Love the title:) the bread looks fabulous! nice job!

Jen H said...

Thanks so much for the shout out! I'll be posting a new grilled cheese later today, so stay tuned!

Amanda said...

It came out beautiful!!

PheMom said...

This post is bananas, b-a-n-a-n-a-s! LOL! I cracked up! I think your Challah looks great!