I feel like I’m stuck.
In a traffic jam minus the cars.
Bumper to bumper thoughts and a pile up of stress.
It’s during these times that I can’t seem to summon the voice that says, “Jessica, there’s no need.”
No need to worry about things you can’t control.
And no need to worry about what things you can control.
Because the guilt of wanting something different but not knowing what actions to take to get there and the frustration of trying to identify exactly where “there” is can sometimes be weightier than external stressors themselves.
So in the spirit of lightness and release, I give you this no-knead, light and fluffy challah bread.
No tense gluten worked to a paralyzing climax and no firm crust to crack under the weight of uncertainty.
Simply soft, light and airy bread that thrives in loose form, slathered haphazardly with anything convenient to your current location – butter, jam, bacon fat.
Give up control and just let the spread tell you where it wants to go.
As in where on the bread and in what quantities.
No matter how anxious life may make us, spreading tart cherry jam in our hair certainly cannot improve our situation.
And although at times we may not have any clue where we’re going, this bread will certainly make for a much tastier journey.
Looking for more beautiful bread? Try this gently sweet, and stunning Heavy Whipping Cream Braided Yeast Bread
No-Knead Soft Challah Bread
- 1/2 C plus 2 T warm water, 110F
- 1/4 C milk, warm
- 2 1/4 tsp dry, active yeast
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 1/4 C neutral oil such as vegetable or canola
- 2 T pure maple syrup
- 2 T honey
- 2 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
- 2 1/2 C all purpose flour
- 1 C bread flour
- egg yolk mixed with 1 tsp whole milk, as a wash for the risen bread
Mix the yeast, water and 1 T honey in a large bowl. Allow yeast to proof for 10 minutes until bubbly and smells of yeast.
Add all the remaining ingredients to the yeast mixture except the flour. Stir to combine. Add 3 C flour and stir completely. Slowly add the remaining 1/2 C AP flour as needed to make a cohesive dough, but not an overly dry dough.
Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled, very large bowl. Cover and place in a warm area to rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 – 2 hours. Gently deflate the dough and divide it into three pieces. Roll them until they are long and then braid your bread into any desired shape. I braided and then curled mine into a circle. Use extra flour sparingly if needed. Brush lightly with oil, cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 min. Preheat oven to 350F during the second rise.
Gently brush with the egg and milk wash and then bake in the preheated oven until lightly brown and hollow sounding when tapped, about 25-35 min. Cool and enjoy!
High Altitude No-Knead Soft Challah Bread Recipe Adjustments: Use only 1 3/4 tsp dry yeast and up the salt to 2 1/2 tsp. Only allow bread to rise til doubled, which may be less than the time stated here. The remaining process and ingredient list is the same.
Adapted from AverieCooks