CHICOPEE, Mass. (Mass Appeal) – Rabbi James Greene, from the Springfield JCC, came to celebrate the upcoming Jewish New Year by baking a special challah bread with a twist. Plus, he talked about the “Cheers to 10 Years” fundraiser for the JCC’s special needs programming, which you can find more information about on kehillah-sjcc.org.
- 1 package yeast
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 cups warm water
- 1/3 cup oil
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 5 to cups bread flour
- 1/2 cup honey
- Cinnamon sugar for sprinkling (optional)
- In a large bowl dissolve the yeast and a pinch of the sugar in 1 cup of the warm water and let stand for 10 minutes.
- Whisk the oil and honey into the yeast, then beat in two of the eggs, one at a time, with the remaining sugar and salt. Gradually add 5 cups of the flour, and more water if necessary. When the dough holds together, it is ready for kneading.
- Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth (for about 10 minutes). Clean out the bowl and grease it, then return the dough to the bowl. Cover and let rise for two-three hours (depending on the temperature of the room), until doubled in size. Punch down, cover and let rise again for another 30-45 minutes
- Take the dough and break it in to thirds. Roll each piece out into a rope-shape strand as thick as a thumb and then circle them around each other (or braid the 3 strands together during the rest of the year). Let the challah rise again for 30 minutes.
- Beat the remaining egg and using a pastry brush, coat the loaf in the egg wash. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, if desired (who are we kidding – everyone likes that).
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until golden brown and loaves sound hollow when tapped. Cool the loaves on a rack.