Jewish Bread Machine Challah

Challah bread with sesame seeds
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Prep: 60 mins
Cook: 45 mins
Rising: 90 mins
Total: 3 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 16 servings
Yield: 1 challah
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
213 Calories
4g Fat
38g Carbs
6g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16
Amount per serving
Calories 213
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 5%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 46mg 15%
Sodium 214mg 9%
Total Carbohydrate 38g 14%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 6g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 14mg 1%
Iron 1mg 3%
Potassium 63mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This bread machine challah recipe is adapted from "The Artisan Bread Machine" by Judith Fertig (Robert Rose Inc., 2011).

Author Fertig says, the 10-day September holiday of Rosh Hashanah begins the New Year in the Jewish calendar and ends with a fast day on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. When the fast is over, families gather to feast on foods made with honey (to signify sweetness in the coming year) and foods that are round (to signify a year with no endings).

The directions are for a 2-pound challah that can be baked in a bread machine or oven.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 1 large egg, beaten

  • 1 large egg yolk, beaten

  • 1 cup lukewarm water

  • 1/2 cup honey

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 4 2/3 cups bread flour

  • 1 1/4 teaspoons instant or bread machine yeast

  • 1 large egg, beaten, for egg wash

  • Sesame or poppy seeds, optional

Steps to Make It

  1. Add salt, egg, egg yolk, water, honey, and oil to the bread pan. Spoon flour on top of the liquid. Add yeast.

  2. Select the Basic/White or Sweet cycle and the Light Crust setting and press Start.

  3. At the start of the final rise, press Pause. Remove dough from bread pan, transfer to a floured surface and punch down gently.

  4. Divide dough into thirds. Roll each third into a 10-inch long rope. Lay the three ropes out parallel to each other on a floured surface so they are very close, but not touching. Braid ropes together snugly. Tuck ends under to form an oblong loaf.

  5. Brush braid with beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame or poppy seeds, if desired, pressing the seeds into the dough.

  6. Remove kneading paddle(s) from bread pan. Place braid in pan and press Start to continue the cycle.

  7. The machine will tell you when the bread is done. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.

Recipe Variations

For Oven-Baked Braided Challah

  • Prepare above recipe through step 1, then select Dough cycle and press Start. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. When cycle is finished, transfer the dough onto a floured surface and punch down gently.
  • Divide dough into thirds and continue as in steps 3 and 4, above. Cover with greased plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until doubled. Heat oven to 350 F. Egg wash bread as in step 5, above. 
  • Bake until an instant-read thermometer registers 190 F—about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.

For Oven-Baked Round Challah

  • Prepare above recipe through step 1, then select Dough cycle and press Start. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. When the cycle is finished, transfer dough to a floured surface, punch down gently and form into a round loaf.
  • Cover with greased plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until doubled. Heat oven to 350 F. Egg wash bread as in step 5, above.
  • Bake until an instant-read thermometer registers 190 F—about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack.