Challah

I wanted to try a fluffy white bread and picked Challah because Galit has a fondness for it. 

Challah
Challah is a feature of Friday night meals in Jewish families. It is an enriched bread dough with eggs, honey and oil in the mixture. The result is a light crumb with a hint of sweetness.
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Ingredients
  1. 200 ml water
  2. 2 teaspoons active dried yeast
  3. 500 grams strong white flour
  4. 1 teaspoon salt
  5. 2 medium eggs, beaten
  6. 2 teaspoons runny honey
  7. 65 mls oil (or 55 grams melted butter )
  8. egg glaze (1 egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon of water and optional instant coffee)
  9. [Optional] 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
Instructions
  1. Sprinkle the yeast into the water in a small bowl. Leave for 5 minutes. Stir to dissolve.
  2. Mix flour and salt together in a large bowl.
  3. Make a well in the centre and pour in the yeasted water.
  4. Using a wooden spoon draw enough flour into the water to make a soft paste.
  5. Cover and leave to "sponge" until frothy and risen (about 20 minutes).
  6. Beat eggs in a small bowl
  7. Add eggs, honey and oil to the flour well.
  8. Mix altogether to form a soft dough.
  9. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface.
  10. Knead until smooth, shiny, and elastic (about 10 minutes).
  11. Put the dough in an oiled bowl, turning to coat the dough.
  12. Cover and leave to rise until doubled in size (about 2 hours, or up to 24 hours if in the fridge).
  13. Knock back. Rest for 10 minutes.
  14. Shape into a plait or spiral
  15. Place on a oiled baking sheet.
  16. Cover and prove until doubled in size (about 45-60 minutes).
  17. Brush with the egg glaze.
  18. Sprinkle with poppy seeds, if that is your thing. Personally I'm not a fan but Galit likes them.
  19. Bake in the preheated oven at 180° C until richly golden and hollow sounding (about 45 minutes).
  20. Cool on a wire rack.
How to shape into a plait
    1. Divide into 3 equal pieces.
    2. Roll each piece into a 40 cm long rope.
    3. Tapir the ends of each rope.
    4. Plait the ropes.
How to shape into a spiral
    1. Roll into 50 cm long rope.
    2. Coil into a snail.
    3. Tuck the end under.
Balagan Recipes http://balaganrecipes.info/

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