~ by Mark Hellermann, Pastry Chef Instructor, CKCA
The key to this recipe is to weigh each individual ingredient using a kitchen scale. Students in the Professional Baking & Pastry Program recommend the following breakdown of ingredients. Baking is, in fact, a more exact science than cooking, because the raw materials in baking react with one another on a chemical level to create something entirely new.
Precise amounts of ingredients are a key training point in a baker's education, to train the baker to be alert to how even the tiniest change in ingredient amount or quality affects the outcome of a recipe.
8 ounces water
3/4 ounce fresh yeast
1 pound 4 ounces bread flour
4 ounces egg yolks
1 and ½ oz. sugar
.13 oz. honey (scant tablespoon)
.4 oz. (2 tsp) salt
2 ounces canola oil
Combine above ingredients using straight dough method, (dissolve the water in the yeast; add the remaining ingredients) and place in an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook.
Let the mixture run on medium speed for 10 minutes. This in effect kneads the dough and develops the gluten. Remove dough from mixer, shape into a loose ball, and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Let dough rise in bowl for 1 and ½ hours in a warm location.
Shape dough into braids and proof (rise) in a warm location for another half an hour.
Brush top with a mixture of a beaten egg mixed with a small amount of water, and shake on sesame seeds, poppy seeds, or Jenny's Streusel Topping.
Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes until nicely browned.
Yield 4 small or two large loves
Secretly Simple Streusel Topping for Challah
~ by Jenny Shidler Culinary Arts 09, current CKCA Baking and Pastry Student
Combine equal parts of flour, sugar and margarine and add ½ to 1 tsp cinnamon. Mix to create a crumb consistency Refrigerate for half an hour. Sprinkle on challah right before baking.