Cakery Friday: Apples and Honey Challah

With the Jewish New Year spirit in mind, I decided to make a creative play on challah. Breads have always intimidated me. {You would think after an entire class on bread making I would be over this, but no, not the case}.

This challah is special – it’s made with honey instead of sugar and it has apples inside. The baked apples add a tangy sweetness to the rich bread. The flavors are delicate, yet a perfect combination!

Gather all of the ingredients.

In a small bowl combine 2/3 cup of warm water with 1 packet {2 1/4 teaspoons} of active dry yeast and 1 teaspoon of honey. Let stand until foamy, this should take a few minutes.

In the bowl of your electric mixer combine the yeast mixture, 1/3 cup vegetable oil, 2 eggs, 1 egg yolk and 1/3 cup of honey. Whisk together. Place the bowl on the mixer stand fitted with the dough hook attachment. Add in 4 1/4 cups of flour and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Use the dough hook on speed 2-3 of your mixer until all of the flour is mixed in with the wet ingredients. Lower the speed and let the dough hook knead the dough for 5 minutes, until elastic and slightly sticky. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 1 hour. The dough will be almost doubled in size.

Peel, core and dice 2 MacIntosh apples squeeze a little lemon juice over them to keep from browning. Place the dough onto a floured counter and gently press it down to flatten. Spread 2/3 of the apples over 1/2 of the flattened dough. Fold the other half of the dough over the apple chunks and press the dough down around them, making almost a sandwich out of the dough.

Spread the remaining 1/3 of apples over half of the folded dough. Fold the other half over the apples, pressing the dough down again.

Your dough should look almost square’ish. Fold the corners under with your hands and form the dough into a round {almost} ball. Place your empty bowl, cavity side down, over your dough ball and allow to rise for 30 minutes.



Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Roll and stretch each piece carefully, into a rope. If apple chunks fall out during the process, just push them back in.



Braid the dough however you prefer. I took the four ropes and braided them to become round. You could also cut the dough into 3 ropes and braid like you typically picture a challah.

Transfer the dough to a Silpat mat or parchment covered baking sheet. Beat 1 egg until smooth and brush over challah {this is an egg wash}. Allow the challah to rise for another 45 minutes, preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Before baking, brush the loaf once more with the egg wash. Bake in the middle of oven for 40-45 minutes. It should be bronzed. If during the baking process you notice your challah getting too dark, cover it with aluminum foil and bake covered for the remaining time.

It is difficult to know exactly when the bread is done baking, if you have an instant read thermometer, the bread is done when the center reaches 195 degrees. You can also tap on the top, if it sounds hollow, the bread is cooked.

For a printer-friendly version of this recipe click here: Apples & Honey Challah

Slice it up and enjoy!

Happy Baking!




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  2. […] all about multi tasking, so naturally I’m in love with this challah for the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah; it starts Sunday night), which incorporates apples and […]

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