Pandan Challah

Ingredients

1 3/4 cups of lukewarm water (100 degrees f)

2 packets of yeast

2 teaspoons of salt

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 cup of honey

1/2 cup of unsalted butter, melted

2 teaspoons of pandan extract

7 cups of all-purpose flour

egg wash – 1 egg and 1 tablespoon of water mixed

Making the dough

Mix the yeast, butter, salt, eggs, honey and pandan extract, with the lukewarm water in a large glass bowl.

Add the flour cup by cup and mix with a spoon / spatula.

Once the 7 cups are mixed in, knead for about 6-8 minutes until dough becomes a round ball, add flour as necessary.

First rise

Cover bowl with a damp cloth and leave to rise until double the size for at least an hour – 2 hours.

Once risen, punch down and cut dough into 4 portions and put into air tight bags if not planning to use immediately.

The dough is ready for immediate use / refrigeration / freezing. Freezing is recommended over refrigeration as dough will rise again in the fridge.

Braiding the loaf

Divide the dough into 3 or 6 equal pieces, depending on the type of braid you’d like to do.

Roll each piece of dough into a long rope about 16 inches long.

If the ropes shrink as you try to roll them, let them rest for 5 minutes to relax the gluten and then try again.

For 6 braids, I like this technique:

  • merge the 6 ropes and fan them out
  • take the right most rope and place it over the next to left adjacent ropes
  • thread it under the third rope then over the last two left ropes until reaching the leftmost side
  • tldr: from right – over 2 – under 1 – over 2
  • repeat this until you reach the ends
  • merge all the ropes and tuck under
  • tuck the top under as well

Second rise

Line a baking sheet / tray with parchment paper or use baking mat.

Place the braided loaf on top and sprinkle with a little flour.

Cover with a cloth again.

Let the challah rise in a warm place away from drafts until puffed, for about 1 hour.

Bake

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Once risen, brush with egg wash.

Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, rotating half way.

Cool, slice and enjoy!

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About

Matt Pinner builds interactive clothing and installations while helping others. A software architect by day, an artist by night, Matt combines his learned skillsets with a desire to explore how humans interact with one another and the images they project. Matt uses custom circuitry, programming and rapid prototyping to deliver value and joy.

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