Shabbos Challah

By Efrat Libfroind

2.2 pounds (1 kg or 7⅓ cups) flour
2 tablespoons dry yeast
5 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
2 to 2¼ cups warm water
½ cup oil

Sesame seeds (optional)

Egg wash:
2 eggs
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons strong tea (steep a
teabag in 3 tablespoons water)

  1. Sift flour into a bowl. Add yeast, sugar, and mix. Add salt and mix. Add warm water; begin with 2 cups and gradually add another ¼ cup if needed. Knead the ingredients for a few minutes until a dough begins to form. Add oil and knead for 10 minutes. Oil the surface of the dough and cover with a towel.
  2. Put the dough in a warm place and let rise until doubled in bulk. This will take about 1½ hours.
  3. Knead the dough for a few minutes. Divide into 4 equal parts, and roll each part into a ball. Roll out each ball into a very long, narrow rectangle and roll it up jelly-roll style.
  4. Attach the ends of two jelly rolls and twist them around each other to form a thick rope. Shape each rope into a ring and squeeze the ends together firmly. The hole in the middle will disappear during the rising and baking. Transfer the challah to a 9-inch baking pan.
  5. Prepare the egg wash. Whisk the eggs with the oil and tea essence and spread over the challahs.
  6. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and allow to rise for 20 minutes in a warm place. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC).
  7. Bake the challahs for 35-45 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the baking pans and allow to cool.


Yield: 2 (9-inch) round challahs


Note: Before rolling up the rectangles of dough, you can add a filling at that point.



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