Oct 022011

Challah bread is a traditional Jewish egg bread.  Most of the time it is a braided bread, but you don’t have to braid it.  There are a lot of eggs in this bread,  that provides two things.  First, a fuller richer flavor, and second a longer shelf life.  I have left this bread out for as long as a week.  When I say out, I mean uncovered.   The presence of the eggs also help giving the bread a golden brown color.





This recipe is for two 1 pound 8 ounce loaves


1 ounce fresh compressed yeast

1 1/2 cups cold milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 ounce of vanilla sugar (recipe follows)

1 tablespoon of salt

2 whole eggs

2 egg yolks (save the whites to wash the bread)

1 pound 8 ounces of bread flour

1/3 cup of olive oil

egg wash


Vanilla Sugar

Split four whole Vanilla Beans and put them in the tall canister.  Fill canister with sugar.  Shake once a day for two weeks.  There is no rule as to much vanilla you use.  The rule of thumb is the more flavor you want the more bean you use.


  1. Dissolve the yeast in the cold milk ( I do this in my mixing bowl if using my mixer)
  2. add the vanilla, vanilla sugar, whole eggs, and egg yolks; whisk until blended.
  3. Mix in all but a few handfuls of flour using the dough hook.
  4. add the olive oil and and knead the dough for about 10 minutes.   Add flour as needed to get a the right consistency
  5. Cover and let rise until it has doubled in volume.
  6. Punch down dough.  Cover and let it rise again until it has doubled in volume.
  7. Punch down the dough again.   Cut the dough into 6 equal pieces (usually about 8 ounce).
  8. Roll each piece into a string, about 10 to 12 inches long.
  9. Use three pieces to braid each loaf.  Instruction on braiding in the video
  10. transfer the loaves to a sheet pan and let them rise until they are 1 and a 1/2 times the original size.  Preheat oven to 350
  11. Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes.  The loaves should have a deep golden brown color when they are done.  The internal temperature of this bread should be 195 degrees.
  12. Allow the bread to cool completely before slicing.
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