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More on Gluten-Free Challah Baking

We had lots of interest in our feature last week about gluten free challah baking with Orly Gottesman, who has just introduced Blends by Orly, a line of gluten-free flours for the home baker (JLBC September 25). Some of you were very excited about finally being able to make gluten-free challah that had a similar taste and texture to conventional challah, but asked for a recipe that wasn’t too time consuming. Gottesman said her recipe in the article may seem long because she spelled out every step so novice bakers would achieve excellent results. Here is a simplified version of the recipe for a smaller amount of challah:

Orly Gottesman’s Gluten Free Recipe for 1 Challah loaf or 10 mini rolls

1) 1¼ cups warm water (105—115°)

2) ¼ oz. dry yeast

3) 1 tsp sugar

4) Let sit for 5 min until the yeast bubbles slightly

5) Add and mix together wet ingredients

6) ½ cups honey

7) 1 large egg

8) 1/3 cup oil

9) Mix dry ingredients together separately

10) 3 1/3 cups (16 oz.) Blends by Orly Manhattan Blend

11) 1/3 cup oats

12) 2.5 tsp. salt

4) Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture and mix together until all ingredients are incorporated. The mixture should not be wet like a batter but should be sticky.

5) Braid the challah or evenly distribute the mixture into an oil-sprayed loaf pan. For a braided look, use a challah mold. Let sit in a warm and moist area for 30-45 min covered with a warm wet towel to let the dough rise.

6) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Egg wash the top of the risen challah with a lightly beaten egg and bake the the challah for approximately 30 minutes, or until the color is a golden brown and the outside is crispy.

Braiding challah takes practice whether you are making conventional or gluten free challah. With gluten free, Gottesman says the key is to be gentle with the dough so it doesn’t break. You can watch Gottesman make gluten free rolls and a braided loaf on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ue1cJvbnFPY&index=2&list=UUdQy2mBGLIo3yptfJ850c0w.

If you already have a favorite challah recipe, simply substitute one cup of Blends by Orly Manhattan Blend for regular flour and add 25–30 percent more liquid. Gottesman said she developed her blends because she was unsatisfied with the results from other gluten-free flours on the market.

Here’s another recipe for gluten free challah, submitted to JLBC by Dr. Sema Bank Goldstein:

1) 2 tbls yeast

1.5 cups of warm water

2 tbls honey

Let sit for 5 minutes

2) Add 3.5 cups oat flour

1/2 cup rice flour

1/2 cup flax meal

2 tsp salt

1/4 cup honey

3) Mix and add four eggs one at a time

4) Pour into well-greased 10 inch loaf pan, a challah look mold, or smaller pans. Let rise for 30–45 minutes. Bake 30-45 minutes @350 for a loaf pan; less time for smaller pans.

By Bracha Schwartz

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