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Challah, Multicolor

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“I made this for the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, which celebrates the harvest season. I used my standard challah recipe (Challah), but replaced the water with various vegetable purees. So the harvest colors of the loaf complemented the theme of the holiday perfectly! I can also picture making just the beet and spinach colors for a festive red and green Christmas wreath bread for my Christian friends! This recipe makes 12 loaves, but could easily be reduced. There are 4 separate batches of bread dough, one for each color. Then you divide each into strips and braid one of each color together in 4-strand braids.”
2hrs 15mins
12 loaves

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. for the vegetable-colored loaves: peel and dice beets and carrot.
  2. put beets, carrots, and spinach in separate saucepans with enough water to cover by 1/2 inch, and cook each until soft, adding water as needed to keep just under cover.
  3. in turns, puree each vegetable and its cooking water, adding water as needed to get 2 cups of liquid puree from each vegetable.
  4. you should now have 2 cups each of spinach, carrot and beet puree. let each cool to just barely warm.
  5. pour each puree into separate large mixing bowls, and put 1 2/3 cup water into a fourth mixing bowl for standard challah. these will be the 4 separate batches of dough.
  6. to each liquid add 1/2 cup oil, then 1/2 cup honey.
  7. hint: pour the oil just before the honey, and the honey will slip right out of the measuring cup.
  8. mix well, then add 3 eggs to each batch, and mix again.
  9. to each mix add 3 tsp salt, mix well.
  10. add 3 cups bread flour to each batch, mix until sloppy.
  11. add 2 scant Tablespoons instant dry yeast to each batch, mix well.
  12. continue adding flour (this is where I switch to all-purpose) to each batch until thick enough to turn out and knead.
  13. one at a time, knead each batch on a floured surface, adding more bread flour as needed.
  14. the dough has enough flour when it is feeling rather firm, bounces back when you press on it, and feels tacky but not sticky.
  15. when each batch is done being kneaded, put it back in its mixing bowl, coating the mixing bowl first with a little oil. flip the dough around in the oil to cover entirely with a thin film of oil.
  16. cover each batch with a large plate, or with heavy plastic wrap, and let sit 45-50 minutes in a warm spot to rise until approximately doubled in size.
  17. one at a time, flip each batch of dough onto floured surface, knead briefly, and cut and form 12 long strips for braiding. flour each lightly to keep from sticking.
  18. keep strands in a pile of each color, until all doughs are done being made into strips.
  19. you now have 4 piles of 12 strips each to braid.
  20. make 4-strand braids using one strip of each color. (to see a demo of this, GO TO-->).
  22. put loaves on parchment-covered baking sheets, cover well with plastic wrap or with a large plastic tablecloth, and let rise 30-45 minutes in a warm spot, until doubled in size.
  23. add about 1/3 - 1/2 cup water to 3 egg whites and mix well.
  24. use egg white mixture to glaze loaves after rising is done, using a soft bristle pastry brush.
  25. bake at 350 F for 25-30 minutes, or until nicely browned and sounding hollow when you knock on the bottom of the loaf.
  26. cool on racks.
  27. freezes well.

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