Challah bread is the beautiful braided bread that is made especially for the Sabbath dinner. It is the only food that is required for the Sabbath dinner. Challah bread is a sweet, eggy type bread that goes well with many things. I like Honey Butter on mine. You can also put plain butter or jam and preserves on it too. Whatever you like. This is a fairly easy bread to make, but you may need some help with making it if this is your first time making Challah bread.
1 1/2 cups warm water
2 tablespoons instant active dry yeast
1/2 cup honey
1 tbsp. oil
1 1/2 tsps. salt
1 tbsp. sugar
5 cups flour, plus additional flour (may take 8 or 9 cups of flour total)
Take 1/2 cup of the warm water from above and mix the yeast and 1 Tbsp of sugar with it in the large mixing bowl you will be using to make this bread. Then combine the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl in order listed. Add enough flour and knead to make a smooth dough. Knead for approximately 10 minutes. Oil the top of the bread dough and cover. Let the dough rise in a warm place until double, about 1-1/2 hours. Punch down.
Divide dough in half. Take one of the halves and cut one-third from it; set aside. Take the rest of the part of the half dough and break (or cut) into three balls. about 18-inches long. Put a little bit of flour down and lay the ropes side-by-side on it. Pinch tops of the strands together. Braid like you would if you were braiding hair. Pinch bottom ends and fold under. Then take the 1/3 of dough you set aside and break into three pieces. Braid these like above with the larger part of dough. Place this braid on the top of the larger one. Do this with the other half of dough.
Place braids on greased baking sheets and cover. (if you do not grease the pans, the bread will stick, so make sure you do.) Let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes. Then take one egg and beat it very well. Brush the braids with beaten egg. Bake at 325 degrees for 40-45 minutes, until done. If loaves are on two separate sheets, rotate halfway through baking time for even baking. If loaves start to brown too quickly, loosely lay a piece of foil on top. Cool on wire racks, covered.
The Importance of the Challah on the Sabbath
The bread is covered with a cloth (called a Challah Cover) while Kiddush is recited. Then the cloth is removed from the bread and the loaves are lifted up while a blessing is said: “Blessed are you Lord our God, King of the Universe, who brings forth bread from the earth.” In the same way, the Messiah was laid in the earth and covered with a cloth, “And he it down and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulcher that was hern in stone, wherein never man before was laid.” (Luke 23:53) Then He was lifted up from th dead, brought forth bread from the earth and exalted. The bread is broken and then dispersed around the table. The Sabbath bread was a prophecy of the coming Messhiah’s sacrifice, ressurection, and spreading of His words.
(The above text was partly taken from A Family Guide to the Biblical Holidays by Robin Sampson & Linda Pierce.)
And when you eat this bread, remember the Living Bread that was broken for us when Christ died on the cross for us.
Matthew 5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
I hope you have enjoyed reading the thoughts and happenings of a fifteen-year-old girl from the country. “You can do all things through CHRIST who strengthens you!” Philippians 4:13