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Easy Challah I (P, TNT)
Source: Unknown
Yield: 1 challah

1 package active dry yeast
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3/4 cup warm water plus 1 tablespoon, divided
1/4 teaspoon ground saffron
3 to 3-1/2 cups flour
2 eggs
3 tablespoons margarine, softened
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sesame seeds

Dissolve yeast and sugar in 1/4 cup water. Combine saffron and remaining 1/2 cup water; add to yeast. Stir in 1-1/4 cups flour, 1 whole egg, 1 egg white, margarine, and salt. Beat on low speed with mixer for 30 seconds; beat on high speed for 3 minutes.

Stir in as much remaining flour as you can. Turn dough out on floured surface, knead in remaining flour, enough to make a moderately soft dough. This will take 3 to 5 minutes.

Place dough in greased bowl, turning dough to coat all sides. Cover and let rise until nearly doubled.

Punch dough down. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.

Set aside 1/3 of dough. Divide the large piece into thirds; roll each into an 18" rope. On greased baking sheet, place dough and braid loosely; begin in middle and work towards ends. Moisten and seal ends. Shape the small piece of dough into three 11" ropes; braid and seal ends. Moisten top of large braid. Place small braid on top.

Cover loosely; let rise until double, about 30 minutes.

Combine remaining egg yolk and 1 tablespoon water. Brush over loaf; sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake in 375°F oven, about 25 minutes. Cover loosely with foil the last 10 minutes to prevent over browning, if necessary. Cool on rack.

Poster's Notes:
Saffron is prohibitively expensive. A small amount of turmeric can be substituted to provide the yellow color.

Posted by Judith Sobel

Nutritional Info Per Serving: N/A