A delicious, not to sweet challah that has many incarnations (various stuffings, toppings, shapes). More variations on my blog,









  • 8 oz white whole wheat flour

  • 8 oz bread flour

  • 4.5 tsp instant yeast*

  • 12 oz warm water

  • 3 extra large whole eggs

  • 1 extra large egg, separted

  • 2.5 tsp kosher salt

  • 4 oz olive oil

  • 4 oz honey

  • 20 oz all purpose flour

  • 1-2 tsp seeds or dried onion for topping

  1. Combine in a large mixing bowl: white whole wheat flour, bread flour, yeast. This recipe can be made in a stand mixer, with an electric mixer or by hand.

  2. In a separate small bowl, combine 3 whole eggs, 1 yolk (reserve the white) and the salt. Measure out the oil and honey.

  3. Add warm water and mix the flour and yeast with the dough hook of your mixer until you have a shaggy mass. The yeast will activate as soon as the mixture is hydrated.

  4. To proceed by hand, mix the above ingredients with a mixing spoon or flexible bowl scraper.

  5. *You can use dry active yeast by activating with the water and 1 Tbsp sugar, add the white whole wheat flour and all purpose flour after the yeast has bubbled for about 5 minutes.

  6. Add the eggs/salt into the raggy dough. Add the oil/honey. The additions will not totally blend into the mass of dough.

  7. Add the all purpose flour in 2 additions. The dough will be soft and look like it wants more flour. Resist at this point. Beat at slow speed and then medium speed until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl and forms a unified, although not quite smooth mass.

  8. If kneading by hand, have 10 oz of the all purpose flour on a work surface, make a well, add the loose raggy dough and world the dough by shaping into a rectangle, folding over the right side toward the center, the left side toward the center, the top and the bottom. Turn and repeat several times.

  9. Pour about 2 Tbsp olive oil over the dough (or into the mixing bowl). Gently turn until the surface is greased and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Place in a draft free spot (cool oven is great) until almost doubled in bulk (45-60 minutes)

  10. OR you can take a break at this point and allow to proof (rise) in the refrigerator for 8-10 hours. If proofing in the refrigerator, let the dough come to room temperature (30-60 minutes) before proceeding.

  11. Deflate the proofed (risen) dough gently with the heel of your hand. Turn a few times and divide into 3 portions (about 22-23 ounces each).

  12. Grease loaf or round pans with spray oil, dust with flour or cornmeal or place parchment paper on a cookie sheet, sprinkled with cornmeal or flour.

  13. You are now shaping the challah dough. You can do this in many ways: braiding, forming balls of dough that touch each other, making knots (separated they form rolls). Check my blog for shaping variations:

  14. My favorite easy shape: make 5-6 logs that look like "tootsie roll" - about 4 inches long and tuck them crosswise into the prepared loaf pan. They will grow into each other and form a loaf with an irregularly shaped top.

  15. Let the dough proof about 45 minutes. Turn the oven on to 370 degrees. With a silicone brush, brush a bit of egg white on top of the proofed loaves and sprinkle with seeds or za'atar or dried onion (or anything you like).

  16. Slip the loaves into the oven, turn heat down to 360 degrees and bake for approximately 25 minutes for loaves or 15 minutes for rolls. Cool for 20 minutes and remove to a cooling rack until completely cool. Wrap if not using within a day or 2.

  17. Challah freezes very well - double wrap in plastic freezer bags. Defrost OUT of the bags. Warm for 4-5 min in the oven before serving.




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