Monday, September 12, 2011

Apples & Honey Whole Grain Challah

Our HBin5 assignment was to make 1/2 batch (2 pounds of dough) of the Apples and Honey Whole Grain Challah. 

Carefully, I wrote out the ounces of a full batch everything on one side of the ingredients in the recipe, and ounces for half batch on the other side. 

I began making the dough, using white whole wheat flour instead of regular whole wheat.  I even made sure to use 1 1/2 eggs (an egg and a white)!  All was going well until I added the water.  After I added 3 cups of water, I realized my goof--enough water for a full batch was used.  Not the first time this has happened, so I started adding enough of everything else to make a full batch. 

I'm glad I had enough apples in the house.  You can see the chunks of apple in the dough.

Still, it was kind of hard to mix by hand, so I put it all into my mixer.   It looked kinda thin in the mixer, and I kept adding flour...  I don't know if the dough is any different when making the dough properly, but there's no way this dough could be braided.  It's not quite a dough, thicker than a batter.

I put it all in my square dough bucket (that's the one I use for assignments and experimenting) and went out for about 1 1/2 hours.  When I got back, this is what I saw:

 It was like seeing something from one of the old "Blob" science fiction movies. 

Quickly, I cleaned up it; part went into another dough bucket.  Both buckets went into the refrigerator. 

It was comical--the dough still kept growing over the square dough bucket.  More dough was transferred:

Even after tossing the dough that got onto the counter, there was still a lot of dough left. 

 The next morning, the dough firmed up a bit.  However, it wasn't firm enough to braid.  I stuck with my original idea to use a loaf pan.

I used 1 1/2 pounds of dough in my 8 1/2" loaf pan, letting it rise 1 1/2 hours.  Then an egg wash was applied.  I used raw sugar on top instead of sesame seeds.  The loaf seemed to need more sugar.
That gave the loaf a nice golden color.

I ended up having enough dough to make four 1 1/2 pound loaves.  I was supposed to make only 2 pounds of dough, if I hadn't made the water mistake.  It's ok.  This was like a good, soft sandwich loaf with apple chunks.  We only had a small piece after a few days. 

I baked one loaf at a friend's house yesterday.  This morning, she called and said it was really good.  She said it's a nice sandwich bread, but you get a surprise of apples when you bite into it.

Would be great with peanut butter, I bet.  Oh, that sounds like a good idea!

I hope your loaves came out nice.  Even though this one wasn't braided, it came out tasty.  Plus, I have 2 loaves in the freezer for gifts.



  1. I love to hear about your baking adventures. I made half this recipe as well. I only used 1/2 the amount of water but I still had to add more flour. It was a very wet dough. My turban is a little lopsided.

  2. I've made that mistake a few times myself. I love the picture of your blob taking over the kitchen. Dough really is alive! The bread looks really good too.

  3. Thanks, guys! I wonder what's wrong with this recipe?

  4. In woodturning there are no mistakes, just design changes. So too with bread? Based on our collective experiences (yours, Cathy's, and mine) it does seem this dough is a bit wet. I made my second loaf in a loaf pan as well (with some oatmeal streusel topping) and it turned out well. Now you mention the peanut butter--after it is gone!