Bread

Holla for some Challah

This was a go-with-the-flow kind of bake. A relaxing, if not befuddling, way to wrap up a Monday. Spoiler alert: since it didn’t rise, it turned into a sweet pretzel twist. Week 39: Honey & Raisin Challah

 

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I have the same relationship with active dry yeast that I have with electronics. Sometimes, they just don’t work. For no earthly reason. But they produce cool results when they do work! Hence why I keep attempting to use them . . .

 

This recipe in particular called for a pate fermentee (pre-risen chunk of dough) and it proved to be my downfall. The pate fermentee didn’t rise enough so it brought the whole rest of the dough down with it. I’m going to try challah again with a recipe that doesn’t require a pate fermentee! I’ll get back to you on it.

 

This week’s bake was really an exercise in dough plaiting. I got inspired watching a sped-up video on the FeedFeed’s instragram feed of someone creating a beautiful rose-like plait. So pretty! Since the video was faster than normal, I had to rewatch it a dozen times and screenshot certain points to get the pattern semi-correct.

 

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Forgive my lack of pictures this week – I was in a bit of a sleepy fog and kept forgetting to use the camera! Here’s my baking corner of the counter. I’m still working on the mason jar of local honey that I got for Christmas last year – it’s still mostly liquid with only a few crystals in it – I’m so impressed. It gives this dough the nicest flavor! Kind of flowery, kind of sweet.

 

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The recipe called for raisins, but I threw in currants since I had them on hand. Yum! I like how small and zingy they are. I really want to go make some currant scones now. Tea time, anyone? Or apparently in Sweden it’s called fika – a coffee break during the work day. I’ll take either! Though fika has a nice ring to it. It also fits in well with another one of my favorite scandinavian words: hygge (the cozy warmth of home and the enjoyment of the small pleasures in life.)  Now go impress your friends with your newfound vocabulary!

 

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Warning for this dough: it is super thick and might hurt your stand mixer! My poor stand mixer is out of commission for the next week after getting stuck in this dough. I did the rest of the kneading by hand.

 

 

They look like breadsticks! I prepped them by rolling out the dough and slicing it into strips. Once sliced, I rolled each out one out further before plaiting.

 

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The first step resembled a Star of David, but then it morphed into a rose-like shape.

 

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Ta-daa! Pre-painting of the egg wash and pre-sauna. The egg wash really added to the pretzel-like flavor and lovely sheen on the baked loaf.

 

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May your yeast rise more than mine, and may you discover hygge with a slice of this and a warm mug of tea. Happy munching!

 

 

Recipe from: https://hotbreadkitchen.org/2017/09/21/recipe-honey-raisin-challah/

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