Challah

I have been making challah for years in my stand up large mixer. I went to a challah bake and we all made challah by hand and there is no comparison. A much lighter delicious challah. Try it, you will not be sorry.

INGREDIENTS
2 Sachets Instant Yeast
1 Cup Oil
1 Cup Sugar
4 Eggs
4 ½ Cups Water – Have made with both cold and luke warm water.
2 kg All Purpose (Cake) Flour
2 Tbls Salt

METHOD
Oven 190ºC (375 ºF)
1 Using a large plastic bowl add the water and the yeast and using a wire whisk, whisk for 5 minutes.
2 Add the sugar and continue to whisk for 2 minutes
3 Add the oil and continue to whisk for 3 minutes
4 Add the eggs and continue to whisk for 3 minutes
5 Start adding the flour cup by cup whisking each cup in. Add the salt with the 2nd cup.
6 When you feel you cannot whisk anymore because the mixture is too stiff, remove the whisk and mix in the rest of the flour by hand.
7 Once all the flour is incorporated and you have a soft but not sticky dough, coat with a little oil.
8 Cover with plastic wrap and a blanket and allow to rise till doubled in size.
9 I often make the dough late at night and let it rise till morning out of the fridge.
10 Punch down the dough, separate a small piece of dough the size of a golf ball and say the blessing. Wrap the piece of dough in foil and burn it in the oven
11 Divide the dough into 4 or 5 pieces and plait.
12 Place on a baking tray and cover with plastic and a blanket and allow to rise until double in size.
13 Beat an egg and paint over challah and sprinkle with seeds.
14 Bake for 25 minutes until golden.
15 I often halve the recipe and make 2 large or 3 medium challah but then I do not say the blessing.

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Ginger Bread Men

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Makes about 80
INGREDIENTS

125 grams Butter
3/4 cup Sugar
3 Eggs
4 tsp Ginger
2 tsp Mixed Spice
2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 cup Syrup
2 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda mixed with 1/4 cup boiling water
4 cups Flour (plus a little extra to get the correct consistency)

METHOD

Oven 180 C (350F)

1. Cream butter and sugar.
2. Add eggs one at a time beating all the time.
3. Add ginger, mixed spice and cinnamon and mix.
4. Add syrup and bi-carb mixture.
5. Gradually add flour beating all the time.
6. At this stage chill the dough. Do not add more flour until the dough is well chilled.
7. Roll out and cut into shapes.
8. Bake for about 10-15 minutes

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This mixture holds well for a ginger bread house.

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