Despite my lifelong klutziness with braiding I’ve always wanted to try challah, even if I only do the simplest three-strand version. So I grabbed my trusty Peter Reinhart Artisan Breads Every Day and off to the races. Here’s my result.
Clearly I don’t have the braiding part down quite right nor getting the loaf straight, but not bad for a beginning (not at bread, but at this kind of shaping).
I was surprised cutting into the bread that the strands basically meld together and slices but from this loaf hold together quite nicely. The eggy nature of the dough comes through clearly in the taste. While this loaf has some of the same nice properties as my brioche using eggs vs butter to enrich the loaf is clear. These slices toast up very nicely (in new toaster oven, a bit too bit for normal toaster) and are excellent without butter, but some strawberry jam goes well. Others in the household managed to make some good sandwiches and the bread held up to hand consumption.
So I call this a success and look forward to trying it again, maybe getting really gutsy and trying a five-strand version. By the way, I only used half Peter’s recipe quantities as I really only wanted one loaf.