The Cookdown: Challah
If you read our last post you know we are starting a new challenge. We’ve taken our love of Isa Chandra’s cookbooks to a new level and vowed to cook every recipe in her “Superfun Times: Vegan Holiday Cookbook”. Although cooking through a book with over 250 recipes sounds like slight madness we welcome the challenge. We ain’t never scared (cue Petey Pablo).
So far we have made almost 10 recipes with beautiful (and delicious) results. We’ll post about every recipe but we were so blown away by today’s recipe that it trumped all the others. Today was Challah day. Friends, we love bread, but these loaves changed our lives.
Challah is not a quick bread. We had to prep the dough and let it rise, then braid it like a ponytail, then let it rise some more, then bake it and finally we had to let it cool for 30 minutes. It was well worth the trouble.
To make the waiting less tiresome, we mixed up the dough, let is rise overnight, then braided it the next morning. We left it to rise while we did leg day at the gym, then glazed and dressed it up with poppy seeds when we got back. Because we went about our day while making it, it did not seem like such an arduous process.
It came out just as promised. The loaf was dense, with a hint of sweetness and a perfect crunch to the crust. We paired it with our favorite vegan butter or just ate it plain. A few slices were saved to make the "Challah French Toast" - stay tuned for that receipe review. Who would have thought a traditionally egg-laden bread would come out so lovely when veganized?
A few tips:
- Oil the bowl well when you leave the dough for it’s initial rise. It make braiding and handling the dough much easier
- Know your oven. This goes for any recipe really. The suggested time is just that – SUGGESTED. If you know your oven is a furnace then cook it for less time
- Be prepared for this dough to rise and spread out. Big bowls only for this! It makes two full loaves.
What recipe should we cook next?