Challah Bread

Every time I make bread at home, I instantly proclaim that it’s so good I should really do this more often. And then it’s usually a few months before I actually get around to making bread again.

If you have never made bread at home, this Challah bread would be a good thing to start with. The dough was very forgiving and easy to work with. A coworker of mine came over to make this bread with me on Sunday. We were having a French toast party at work and decided that homemade Challah would be much better than store-bought.

My coworker had never made bread before, but like I said, this dough was very easy to work with. Like most breads, this does require some time with all the rising and waiting. But that’s ok, we enjoyed watching some cheesey chick flick while our bread was doing it’s thing.

Everyone at work was impressed that we made the bread from scratch. And of course, it made some great French toast!

One Year Ago: Strawberry and Spinach Salad
Three Years Ago: Goat Cheese and Spinach Turkey Burgers

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Challah Bread

Yield: 2 loaves

Ingredients:

1 1/2 packages active dry yeast (1 1/2 Tbsp)
1 Tbsp plus 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil, plus more for greasing the bowl
5 eggs
1 Tbsp salt
8 to 8 1/2 cups flour

Directions:

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water.

Whisk oil into yeast, then beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, with remaining sugar and salt. Gradually add flour. When dough holds together, it is ready for kneading. (You can also use a mixer with a dough hook for both mixing and kneading, but be careful if using a standard size KitchenAid–it’s a bit much for it, though it can be done.)

Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth. Clean out bowl and grease it, then return dough to bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until almost doubled in size. Dough may also rise in an oven that has been warmed to 150 degrees then turned off. Punch down dough, cover and let rise again in a warm place for another half-hour.

At this point, you can knead the raisins into the challah, if you’re using them, before forming the loaves. To make a 6-braid challah, either straight or circular, take half the dough and form it into 6 balls. With your hands, roll each ball into a strand about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide. Place the 6 in a row, parallel to one another. Pinch the tops of the strands together. Move the outside right strand over 2 strands. Then take the second strand from the left and move it to the far right. Take the outside left strand and move it over 2. Move second strand from the right over to the far left. Start over with the outside right strand. Continue this until all strands are braided. For a straight loaf, tuck ends underneath. For a circular loaf, twist into a circle, pinching ends together. Make a second loaf the same way. Place braided loaves on a greased cookie sheet with at least 2 inches in between.

Beat remaining egg and brush it on loaves. Either freeze breads or let rise another hour.

If baking immediately, preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush loaves again. Sprinkle bread with seeds, if using. If freezing, remove from freezer 5 hours before baking.

Bake in middle of oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden. (If you have an instant read thermometer, you can take it out when it hits an internal temperature of 190 degrees.) Cool loaves on a rack.

Recipe as seen on Smitten Kitchen

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14 Responses to “Alton Brown’s Overnight Cinnamon Rolls”

  1. #
    1
    Joelen — February 5, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    I love love love this recipe! So super easy and no scary yeast issues from me! 🙂 Thanks for the shout out and exposing my funny AB story! 🙂

  2. #
    2
    Jen — February 5, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    I’m so jealous you got to meet him!

  3. #
    3
    Carrie — February 5, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    I love cinnamon rolls, I might have to give these a try this weekend!

  4. #
    4
    Ari (Baking and Books) — February 6, 2009 at 1:46 am

    These look yummy! AB is the best, how cool that Joelen met him.

  5. #
    5
    Stephanie Wagner — February 6, 2009 at 8:57 pm

    I love the nerdy charm of Alton too! And that first picture = total food porn! You shouldn’t do that to me, now I’m stuck here without a cinnamon roll to eat. Cruel…

  6. #
    6
    Scott W. — February 6, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    Can’t disagree with Steph’s comment, food porn is good. We’ll be making these tomorrow for breakfast.

  7. #
    7
    Jen — February 7, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    Sorry Wagners – Hopefully you made these and enjoyed them as much as we did 🙂

  8. #
    8
    finsmom — February 20, 2009 at 5:48 am

    These look very very yummy.

  9. #
    9
    Maggie — March 22, 2009 at 7:41 pm

    These look so amazing! I’ve never made cinnamon rolls and really want to.

  10. #
    10
    Playful Professional — August 16, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    Did you cover them while they were rising in the oven? The recipe doesn’t say whether or not to and mine (I’m making them right now) aren’t rising…I guess I’ll just throw them in the oven to bake and hope it works out like yours did.

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    11
    Jen — August 16, 2009 at 7:13 pm

    I did not cover them. Mine did rise enough in the oven while baking. Hopefully yours turn out as well!

  12. #
    12
    Zeitgeist — August 18, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    I love AB! I think he’s geeky but he definitely knows great many things about cooking, baking, etc. So when it comes to a recipe from AB, I definitely give it a try! Especially since you’re so good at posting this recipe, I will have to make it this weekend! Your picture also convinces me that this can be done, by an amateur cook like myself!

    Thanks for posting and for sharing!

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    13
    cockade — April 30, 2013 at 8:55 am

    Greetings! Very helpful advice within this post! It’s the little changes that make the most significant changes. Thanks for sharing!

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    14
    Ang — December 25, 2014 at 8:41 am

    All the brown sugar mix came out of mine while baking. What did I do wrong?

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