Challah Bread - Recipe
Makes 2 loaves
1 3/4 cup water
1 1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon salt
8 cups all-purpose flour
Poppy or sesame seeds for sprinkling
Put water, sugar, and yeast in the bowl of a mixer, and mix with a spoon. Add two of the eggs, and the oil, and mix. Using the dough hook, add flour 2 cups at a time, and salt, and mix.
Put dough on a floured board and knead until smooth and elastic. Grease a large bowl with oil, and leave dough in bowl, covered, for at least one hour or until doubled in size.
Punch dough down, knead again on a floured board. Take half the dough and cut into six even pieces, and roll out each piece into a roll about 14 inches long.
Arrange rolls side by side on the board, pinched together at the top, and braid: Move the furthest roll on the right over 2 rolls, then move the 2nd furthest on the left all the way to the far right. Move the furthest roll on the left over 2 rolls, then move the 2nd furthest on the right all the way to the far left. Repeat until the whole loaf is braided. Then either tuck the ends underneath, or twist into a circle to make a round challah. Repeat with the remaining dough to make a second loaf.
Place on parchment paper or silpat on a cookie sheet. Brush loaves with the remaining egg and sprinkle with seeds. Let loaves rise for 30 minutes, then put in a 350°F oven and bake for 30 minutes until golden brown and shiny. Allow to rest 20 minutes before slicing.
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