Selichot Bulletin 5780

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Challah in a Bag

INGREDIENTS (Yields 1 challah)

1 tbsp. yeast

1 cup warm water

3 tbsp. sugar

1/2 tbsp. salt

1/3 cup canola oil

3 cups all-purpose flour + 1/4 cup

1 egg for basting (optional for vegan challah, substitute olive oil)

Sesame seeds for topping

PREPARATION

1. In a 1 gallon plastic ziplock bag, add the yeast, water, sugar, salt,

oil and 3 cups of flour.

2. Give the bag a little shake. Don’t work too hard- remember, it’s

a lazy challah!

3. Place the bag in a bowl of warm water for 30 mins.

4. Remove from bowl, shake, release air from bag, and place on the

table for 1 hour. Flip bag every 20 mins. The dough should be very

wet. It will start to bubble and self-knead. WHOA.

5. After the 1 hour, add 1/4 cup flour and give the bag another shake.

This makes the dough not stick to the bag.

6. Leave the bag for 1 hour and 30 mins to rise. It should still be a wet

dough. If it’s not rising, flip it over and knock it down. If the dough

is wet, the recipe will turn out amazing.

7. Preheat oven to 300F/150C.

8. On a well-floured surface, separate the dough and stretch out 3

strands. Braid.

9. Baste with egg and sprinkle sesame seeds (optional for vegan

challah, substitute olive oil). Leave to rise for 15 mins before it goes

in the oven.

10. Bake on a nonstick tray for 40 mins or until golden on top.

VIDEO: http://www.yourjstory.com/jewlish/challah-in-a-bag/

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Unsweetened Sweet Challah

INGREDIENTS (Yields 1 challah)

1 packet rapid rise yeast

1 cup warm water

1 cup Splenda

1/2 tbsp. salt

1/3 cup olive oil

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 egg for recipe

1 egg for basting



Optional: half cup raisins

Optional: 3 tbsp. honey

PREPARATION

1. Mix dry ingredients in a stand mixer bowl.

2. Mix oil and egg together in a separate cup. Add to dry ingredients

and mix.

3. Add warm water (120 – 130 degrees) to dry ingredients and mix

with kneading hook, until blended.

4. Mix with hook until a soft dough is formed. You may need to add a

bit more warm water (or more flour if needed). Check the dough, it

should be soft and slightly sticky. It should easily form into a

smooth ball. When the right consistency is reached, knead with

hook for 6 minutes.

5. Take dough ball out and divide into thirds or fourths or sixths,

depending upon your challah shape preference.

6. Roll each piece into a strand. Prepare cookie sheet with parchment

paper. Place strands onto sheet and braid. Cover with saran wrap

and let rise until doubled (about 30 - 60 minutes).

7. In the meantime preheat oven to 375°F.

8. Brush top of braid with beaten egg yolk and bake for 30-35 minutes

or until golden brown.

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Twice the Fun

INGREDIENTS (Yields 2 challah)

1 ½ packages active dry yeast (1 1/2 tablespoons)

1 tablespoon plus 1/2 cup sugar

½ cup vegetable oil, more for greasing bowl

5 large eggs

1 tablespoon salt

8 to 8 ½ cups all-purpose flour

Poppy or sesame seeds for sprinkling

PREPARATION

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

lukewarm water.

2. 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.)

3. 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.

4. Divide ball into strands and braid.

5. Place braided loaves on a greased cookie sheet with at least 2 inches

in between.

6. Beat remaining egg and brush it on loaves. Either freeze breads or

let rise another hour in refrigerator if preferred.

7. To bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush loaves again. (If

freezing, remove from freezer 5 hours before baking.) Then dip your

index finger in the egg wash, then into poppy or sesame seeds and

then onto a mound of bread. Continue until bread is decorated with

seeds.

8. Bake in middle of oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until golden. Cool

loaves on a rack.

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How to Make a 3 Strand Challah Braid

A three strand braid is typically the easiest braid to make because this braid

is often used to braid hair, and is a pattern that most people are familiar

with. For this braid, divide the dough into three strands and stretch them

out carefully until they are of an even thickness all the way down. Start

your braid from the center of the strands to give both ends of the loaf a

finished look.

1. Take the left strand (1) and cross it over the middle strand (2).

2. Take the right strand (3) and cross it over the middle strand (2).

3. Repeat crossing left (1) over center (2), followed by right (3) over

center (2) until you reach the end.

4. Pinch the ends together to seal the loaf, then repeat the process

going up the rest of the dough. There is no need to keep track of

which strand was originally number 1, 2 or 3 as you go because the

pattern is the same the entire time.

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How to Make a 4 Strand Challah Braid

A four strand braid is only slightly more complicated than a three strand

braid. Just as with the three strand, I am using numbers 1-4 to describe the

strands. As far as braiding goes, number 1 is always the left-most strand of

dough.

1. To make the braid, pinch the ends of four strands of dough

together at one end.

2. Cross strand 1 over strand 3.

3. Cross strand 2 over strand 3.

4. Cross strand 4 over strand 2.

5. Repeat until you get to the end of the strands. Pinch all loose ends

together.

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How to Make a 5 Strand Challah Braid

Once you have a four strand braid down, a five strand braid is a piece of

cake and you will have a very beautiful loaf for your efforts.

1. To make the braid, pinch the ends of 5 strands of dough together

at one end.

2. Cross strand 2 over strand 3.

3. Cross strand 5 over strand 2.

4. Cross strand 1 over strand 3.

5. Repeat until you get to the end of the strands. Pinch all loose ends

together.

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How to Make a 6 Strand Challah Braid

1. Roll out six equal pieces of dough to make ropes and place them

side by side on the table.

2. Pinch the top of the ropes together, pounding down with a fist to

make sure they are tightly joined.

3. Take the far left strand (red) and cross it to the right over all the

rest of the strands. It should stick straight out to the side, separate

from the rest.

4. Take the strand that was the furthest right (purple) and cross it to

the left over the remaining four strands.

5. Rearrange the strands slightly to make room between the two

middle strands (yellow and green) and fold the strand that is sticking

out all the way to the right (red) down into the middle.

6. Now there is a strand sticking out to the left (purple) but there is

not one sticking out to the right, so you take the strand that is now

the furthest left (orange) and cross it to the right over the remaining

strands.

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7. Take the strand that is sticking out to the left (purple) and bring it

down into the middle between the second and third strands (red and

green).

8. Now there is a strand sticking out to the right (orange) but there is

not one sticking out to the left, so you take the strand that is now the

furthest right (blue) and cross it to the left over the remaining strands.

9. Take the strand that is sticking out the right and bring it down in

between the second and third strands (red and purple).

10. Now there is a strand sticking out to the left (blue) but there is

not one sticking out to the right, so you take the strand that is now

the furthest left (yellow) and cross it to the right over the remaining

strands.

11. Repeat this pattern until there the strands are too short to

continue crossing. Bring all the strands together and smash them well

to join them.

12. Tuck the ends of the dough (the part that was smashed) under the

loaf. This helps ensure that they do not come unraveled while baking.

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How to Make a Round Challah

for Rosh Hashanah

1. Roll out six equal pieces of dough to make ropes.

2. Lay three strands vertically. Take one of the remaining strands of

dough and place horizontally over the first vertical strand, under

the second vertical strand and back over the third vertical strand.

3. Lay three strands vertically. Take one of the remaining strands of

dough and place horizontally over the first vertical strand, under

the second vertical strand and back over the third vertical strand.

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4. Make a traditional braid using the three strands and pinch at the

bottom. Fold each braid under the basket, gently pushing upwards

as you tuck under.

5. Beat egg yolks with 1 teaspoon water. Brush liberally over challah.

Mix sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle evenly on top.

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To those I may have wronged,

I ask for your forgiveness.

For those I may have helped,

I wish I could have done more.

For the many I neglected to help,

I am truly sorry.

To those who helped me,

I am deeply grateful.

~ Author Unknown

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Gmar Chatimah Tova

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