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Friday, November 27, 2020

11/27/2020 05:00:00 PM


Erica Bobrow

Weekly Zoom Session Wrap-up

This week in Challah Time! as we do each week, we kneaded, proofed, baked, and connected.  We chatted a lot about our favorite Thanksgiving dishes this year. A couple of recipes that were shared were from Nancy's Butternut Squash Souffle and Rona's Cranberry Sauce with Apricots.  Deanna enjoyed a vegan green bean casserole made from a recipe found on the Minimalist Baker blog. Helene showed us her antique corn cob mold she used to create Thanksgiving muffins, served with a spicy butter. She also showed us her persimmon loaf and we discussed that fruit's versatility and seasonality for baking purposes. And didn't Deanna say that she has a persimmon tree of her own? 

Weekly Challot Images 

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Send in your images on Friday once your challah has baked, along with your notes to challahtime@gmail.comWe'll admire your work and learn from each other. 

 We also brainstormed a bit about Hanukkah challah ideas, and how we might incorporate traditional Hanukah treats-sufganiyot and latkes-into our challot.  

Along that line of Hanukkah exploration, I personally had a success as well as a 'learning experience' to share. My shabbat challah creation resulted in a very close approximation of delicious jelly in dough. I sealed a mixture of homemade cranberry sauce into a twisted crown braid of pumpkin pie seasoned dough. (Step-by-step photos are posted below.) I was really pleased.

As for the other try, I found a challah recipe online that called for whole wheat and promised a pull-apart sufganiyah result. Unfortunately, the resulting texture was more of a dinner roll with jam inside.  I'm reconsidering my plans for individual Hanukkah challah sufganiyot.      

On the topic of dinner rolls, Cecily made honey whole wheat crescent rolls for Thanksgiving using a recipe from Bread Machine Magic, by Linda Rehberg & Lois Conway. At my request, she has shared pics and a few notes with us. You can find those below,  in Extra Fixin's & Finds.

So what is Extra Fixin's & Finds? It's a new section located below the Weekly Challah Images which will include the extras that aren't necessarily covered during the session but would be of interest to the group. For example,  this week Robin has suggested a YouTube video on making challah from King Arthur.  Please do send in your recipes, dates of upcoming challah bakes, helpful equipment, interesting articles, etc., and it will be shared with the group there.

Looking forward to more Challah Time! together!


Weekly Challot Images

Send in your images on Friday once your challah has baked, along with your notes to We'll admire your work and learn from each other.


Deanna's Challot

"These loaves came out very dense as I used all WW flour. I cut them all in half and put all but one in the freezer. 

The dough was less elastic, so the strands of the braid stretched nicely. A couple of times the strands wanted to break mid-braid, but I was able to fix it as I went along. 

I am going to keep trying other recipes. I wanted a lighter WW, and as I mentioned before, these were quite dense and heavy."


Ellie's Challah

"A success! Lots of issues along the way however...I was looking at three different recipes. It is delicious although it needed a bit more sugar. But nice and fluffy light just like we like it. It took all day off and on...I think the oven at 100 degrees works better than the warming drawer. Not sure if it was that or the yeast that I used the last time that was the problem."


Karen's Challah and Babka 

"I used Erica’s Basic Challah Recipe this time and let the yeast bloom for the first time. That was pretty cool. The Babka is Jamie Geller’s recipe using the other half of the challah. It all turned out fine but I should have taken it all out of the oven 5 minutes earlier."


Lori's Challah

   "Same ole recipe. I pulled it out of the oven 10 minutes before it was yummy, It was a 6-strand. I cooked it for the same [amount of time as usual], but let it rise only in the fridge, braided and baked without the additional rise. It was still lovely. "   


Nancy's Challah

"Allie’s six-braid challah came out reminding me of a cornucopia."



Erica's Challot


   Pumpkin Spice Orange Challah with Cranberry Sauce Filling





Extra Fixings and Finds


Robin's Video Suggestion - The Isolation Baking Show


1. Challah and Cake Pan Cake - The Isolation Baking Show - Episode 4 - YouTube

2. Making Challah Dough - The Isolation Baking Show - Episode 4.5 - YouTube

Robin suggested a 2-part video for us to watch from The Isolation Baking Show, which is produced by King Arthur.  "This video was great for me. I’ve never seen what actually goes on in the mixing process and didn’t know what to do. Maybe some of the other ladies would like this too." Thank you, Robin, for thinking of us! 


Cecily's Honey Whole Wheat Rolls

Honey Whole Wheat Rolls Recipe.        

"I also added 2 teaspoons of vital wheat gluten (for the  2/3 cup of whole wheat flour); for shaping, "roll into a circle, and then cut into triangles [see 3rd image with diagram above]." -- Cecily


Erica's Whole Green Olive Bread Sticks

These were made for Thanksgiving ahead of time and frozen. They were warmed up for our small feast on Thursday and tasted very hearty, salty, and satisfying, indeed! 

I followed Paul Hollywood's recipe from the GBBO Master Class. The changes I'll make when I bake these again are: I'll rinse the olives more thoroughly (they tasted too briny), and I'll use 1/2-3/4 of the amount of olives that he used. I'll split the dough in half and spread both into equal rectangles, then lay the olives in between the two layers.

This go around, I found that using an electric mixer as Hollywood instructed damaged the olives. I removed the crushed olives as best I could, and then mixed the balance of what I had of the whole olives left in by hand. It was a chore because the dough was very sticky. Ask me during Challah Time! if you'd like me to clarify.


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