This challa recipe has evolved over the last few years. I originally got this recipe from my mom who got it from my sister-in-law Miriam. This is the version my family likes best. Let me know what you think.
- 3 tablespoons dry yeast
- 4 cups lukewarm water
- 4 eggs
- 3/4 cup honey
- 1 cup sunflower oil or grapeseed oil
- 18 cups spelt flour
- 2 tablespoons sea salt
Dissolve the yeast in water and add the liquids. Mix well and add the flour. It's best to add flour about 1 cup at a time and mix continuously. When 1/2 the flour is mixed into the dough, add the salt and continue to add flour. When the dough starts to hold its shape, slow down the flour addition to 1/4 cup at a time. You may not need all the flour. You may need a little more.Too much flour can make your dough tough, so go easy with it.
Also, when working with spelt flour, minimal kneading is best. With wheat, particularly whole wheat, the longer kneading makes the dough softer and the bread lighter. With spelt flour, knead it just long enough so the ingredients are well combined. This will keep the dough light and the bread less crumbly.
Shape the dough and place on baking sheets. Leave lots of space in between. Allow to rise for an additional 1/2 hour - 45 minutes before brushing with egg. You can sprinkle tops with poppy seeds or sesame seeds.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350 for approximately 25 minutes for rolls and 35-40 minutes for big loaves. Start checking on the smaller ones at 20 minutes and the larger ones at 30. Challa is done when the bottoms sound hollow when tapped and the tops have a golden hue.