CHALLAH WITH RAISINS
Why I Love This Recipe
Challah can easily be substituted for brioche. It does not have as much butter in it and tastes more cake in flavor. My husband loves when I put chocolate chips instead of raison’s in the dough before I bake it.
The most important thing you need to check for when you make bread is the expiration date on your yeast. If the yeast is not fresh , your bread will not rise and all your beautiful labors and efforts will go to waste. My friend Ellen, who is a wonderful cook, gave me this recipe and it is the best and very easy to make
Ingredients You'll Need
1¼ cups very warm water
1 package dry yeast
½ cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon sugar for mixing with the egg and brushing over
challah before it is baked
8½ to 9 cups better for bread flour
5 eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons salt
1 stick sweet unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup black or yellow raisins
1 tablespoon olive oil for bowl
Combine water, yeast, and sugar in a large bowl. Let sit for 2 to 5 minutes. Stir in 2 cups flour and let sit uncovered for 30 minutes. Stir in eggs, salt, butter, 2 more cups flour, and raisins. Mix with a wooden spoon until smooth. Add enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Turn out the dough on well-floured surface and knead about 10 minutes. Add more flour until dough is no longer sticky. Place dough in a well-oiled bowl. Turn dough once. Divide dough in half. Cut each half in three pieces and roll each 1/3 into a sausage shape. Attach the three pieces of the dough together at the top. Secure by pressing down on dough with your finger and carefully braid. Do same with other half of dough. To make dough a little higher, you may divide each half into 2/3’s, having one piece a little larger for the bottom and top. Each half is then divided into to thirds and braided. The smaller piece goes on top of the larger braided pieces. The dough then rises for two hours before baking.
Turn oven to 350 degrees for a few minutes and turn if off. Place on cookie sheet and let rise in the turned-off oven for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees and bake about 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool. Serve and enjoy!