Challah Bread


Challah bread is more than just a variety of bread; it’s a cherished custom that has been handed down through the years. It features a golden-brown crust and a soft, pillowy center. We’ll examine the technique of creating challah bread, learn about its history, and discover why it has a special place on many people’s tables in this article. Prepare to go out on a voyage through the center of this venerable bread.

The History and Significance of Challah Bread

Challah bread has a long history rooted in Jewish custom and culture. During important occasions and Jewish festivals like Shabbat and Rosh Hashanah, it is frequently consumed as a sign of harmony and spirituality. Let’s explore this cherished bread’s rich history and significance.


  • 4 cups all-purpose flour plus additional for kneading
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg yolk for sprinkling, plus 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • Sesame seeds or poppy seeds for sprinkling (optional)


  1. Combine the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a sizable mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, vegetable oil, and warm water.
  3. To add the wet mixture, create a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Mix the dough until it comes together.
  4. Transfer the dough onto a floured surface and knead it for about 8-10 minutes, adding more flour as needed, until the dough is smooth and elastic.
  5. The dough should be placed in a greased bowl, covered with a clean kitchen towel, and allowed to rise for 1 to 1.5 hours, or until it has doubled in size, in a warm location.
  6. After the dough has risen, gently knock it down to let the air out. Divide the dough into three equal portions.
  7. Roll each portion into a long rope, about 16-18 inches (40-45 cm) in length.
  8. Place the three ropes side by side and pinch them together at one end. Braid the ropes together by bringing the outer ropes over the center rope, alternating sides each time, until you reach the other end. Pinch the ends together to seal.
  9. Place the braided loaf on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  10. Cover the loaf with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for another 30-45 minutes until slightly puffed.
  11. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  12. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk with a tablespoon of water. Brush the egg wash over the top of the challah bread.
  13. If desired, sprinkle sesame seeds or poppy seeds on top of the loaf.
  14. Bake the challah in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
  15. Before slicing and serving, take the bread out of the oven and let it cool on a wire rack.

Enjoy your homemade challah bread as is, or serve it with butter, honey, or your favorite spreads. It’s perfect for sandwiches, French toast, or simply as a delicious accompaniment to a meal.


As a result, challah bread is more than just a particular kind of bread; it also represents spirituality, tradition, and solidarity. One can connect with their heritage and make enduring memories with loved ones by baking and sharing challah. Hence, whether you participate in the weekly ritual of Shabbat or just enjoy a slice of challah with your morning coffee, you are doing so in a tradition that is timeless and international.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

  1. Does challah always have braids on it?
    • There are many different sizes and kinds of challah, including round challahs for Rosh Hashanah and pull-apart challahs, even though the traditional challah is frequently braided.
  2. Is it possible to produce gluten-free challah bread?
    • Absolutely, using gluten-free flour blends and other acceptable ingredients, you can modify classic challah recipes to be gluten-free.
  3. What does covering the challah during blessings mean?
    • Covering the challah symbolizes the notion that, like manna in the wilderness, blessings and wealth can be discovered in obscure and unexpected places.
  4. Are there challah breads that are vegan-friendly?
    • Sure, you can discover vegan challah recipes that employ non-dairy milk and plant-based components like flax eggs.
  5. Is challah bread normally sweet or can I use it for savory sandwiches?
    • Savory and sweet dishes can both be made with challah. It is adaptable and can go well with many different flavors.

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