HOUSTON – With the High Jewish Holiday of Rosh Hashanah happening this weekend, many Houston-area families are planning a special menu where round challah bread will surely be part of it.
Riana Sherman, co-owner, of Houston Catering Concepts explained the significance behind this type of bread and showed us how to give challah ropes a round shape.
“Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year. It is a time to reflect on the past year, repent for the things we have done wrong, and be inscribed in the Book of Life for the upcoming year. We eat round challah to symbolize the turning of the seasons and the chance to start anew. We eat apples and honey to symbolize a sweet new year,” said Sherman.
Watch her complete interview in the video above to learn more about Jewish traditions for the New Year.
Braided Challah Recipe
1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup Soybean oil
5 large eggs
1 tablespoon salt
8 cups High Gluten Flour
1 3/4 cups lukewarm water
Place the flour in a mixing bowl
Add sugar, salt, yeast, oil, eggs (Leave 1 egg for later) and water
Mix for 8-10 minutes
Lightly oil a medium bowl and place dough inside. Cover and set aside to rise for 1-1 ½ hours until doubled in volume.
Place the dough onto a clean countertop and divide into 6 sections. Resist dusting with flour unless necessary. Roll each section into an 8-9-inch rope that tapers on both ends.
Lay the ropes side by side and pinch them all together at the top.
Cross the top right and left strands once.
To continue braiding, move the topmost left strand down to the center of the remaining strands. Move the second strand from the right to the top left position.
Repeat, reversing the pattern: Move the topmost right strand down to the center of the remaining strands, and the second strand from the left to the top right position.
Repeat, alternating the previous 2 steps until you reach the end of the braid.
Pinch or roll ends of challah to seal, tucking any excess dough under the loaf.
Cover and set aside to rise for 45-60 minutes until puffed in size
After 30 minutes, preheat oven to 300 F.
Whisk the remaining egg with a splash of water and a pinch of salt. Gently brush over rested loaf, making sure to coat all areas and creases.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Transfer to a rack; cool completely before slicing.
For High Holiday Recipe: Make Challah ropes into 1 - 2-foot sections, starting from the center rotate counterclockwise till you get to the end.
If you need to contact Houston Catering Concepts, connect with them here.
Recipe provided by Riana Sherman.