A happy challah

By | January 5, 2012

In the last 14 months, I have tried about that many challah recipes. Okay, maybe a few less than 14, but not by much.

I’ve tried recipes from friends, from cookbooks, and from blogs. I’ve baked challahs with 100% whole wheat flour (which is like eating a brick), 65% whole wheat, 50% whole wheat, and just a touch of whole wheat.

There were the recipes that called for applesauce, the ones that called for sugar, and the ones that called for honey. I let the dough rise on the counter, in a warmed oven, and directly underneath our heating unit.

Sometimes the dough was impossibly sticky, sometimes it was impossibly dry. It always seemed to make braiding a nightmare (just ask my husband — he’s braided 95% of our challahs).

I could go on like this for quite some time, but I’ll spare you.

I'm pretty sure my happy dance helped this thing rise.

The point is that I just couldn’t get the perfect challah. Some were bleh, some were okay, some were good…some were even very good. But none were absolutely amazing, and I always felt I hadn’t gotten it right.

Until this week.

The challah dough I made on Tuesday came together easily in the food processor. It actually rose like I wanted. And it was simple to work with!

A huge debt of gratitude is owed to Meg at Peaches and Cake, a new food blogger who posted the recipe.

My braiding skills may leave something to be desired (I’m still new at this since my husband’s been spoiling me) — but the point is that so far, it’s worked! Now all that’s left to do is eat it.

We’re doing that tomorrow night. With guests.

Wish me luck.


8 Comments

MM on January 5, 2012 at 11:29 pm.

And here I was, trying to figure out what could possibly be happier than a chonut. A challah made of chocolate? A challah made of ice cream? A challah topped with whipped cream and sprinkles? But a dough that comes together in a food processor and isn’t too sticky to braid nicely is pretty happy, too.

Reply

Tali Simon on January 6, 2012 at 12:31 am.

A challah made of ice cream…you are definitely on to something.

Reply

Meg on January 5, 2012 at 11:36 pm.

Amazing! Love the variations! And I’m sure your guests will love it!

Reply

Tali Simon on January 6, 2012 at 12:33 am.

I’m banking on their kids filling up on it if they don’t like anything else, so I really hope so. :) Thank you for solving my challah problems!

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Meg on January 6, 2012 at 4:39 am.

Hey Tali, I thought you’d enjoy a pdf of the original Los Angeles Times article of this recipe. Send me an email at peachesandcake@gmail.com and I’ll reply back to you with it! -Meg

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Tali Simon on January 6, 2012 at 9:39 am.

Ooh, fun! Doing now.

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Ester on January 7, 2012 at 8:00 pm.

i make 100% whole wheat challah. only once did i have the “brick” problem you mentioned. really everyone does love it.

Enjoy your challah, though!

Reply

Malka on January 8, 2012 at 11:40 am.

So happy that you found your perfect challah!! mazal tov!

Reply

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