Saturday, January 16, 2010

Challah for Friday

Ok, I know it is Saturday... But I wasn't at home to bake my Friday challah yesterday, and my the time I got home it was too close to Shabbat to post. But I did make a challah, so I am showing it off today!

At the beginning of the week I got a notice at my door that on Friday there would be work done on the electrical system of the complex where we live, and that for a good part of the day we should expect intermittent power outages. Me being me, my first thought was "Oh, no! How am I going to bake challah?" Well my generous twin sister, we'll call her Auntie Twin, welcomed me and Little Girl to her home where she and her three year old, Little Miss, would help us bake in a kitchen that was less likely to lose power. Thanks, Auntie Twin!

For this week I wanted to try this recipe which I found on I know, it is customary to have two loaves for Shabbat, but this looked interesting, so why not? The dough came together nicely, but it didn't seem to rise right. I was a little nervous, but the show must go on, right? When it was time to braid I enlisted the help of Little Miss. She was all about rolling the dough into snakes. And re-rolling them... and making them into dough-balls... But we got there, and her braid looked beautiful. I was a little concerned, as the un-risen braids looked like a challah on top of a challah:

The next rise didn't look too risen to me either, but we went on with the baking. I have had that happen before, where the dough didn't rise greatly, but the baking process helped, and the loaf was nice and fluffy. Well, this loaf didn't rise too much in the oven. But it did turn a beautiful golden brown. It still looked like a challah sitting on top of a challah, but both of those had great color, and the smell was amazing.
When I asked hubby which of the challahs I have made so far he has liked the best, he voted for this one. So even without the rise I expected, the flavor was right on. This was the first time I used real butter instead of margarine (Auntie Twin uses butter, and when in someone else's house, you use the ingredients they are generous enough to share with you!), so maybe that had something to do with the richness of flavor. Maybe next week's challah will be this same recipe, but with margarine and not stacked... We'll see, though... Who knows what recipes I might find in my travels!

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