1/4 c (4 Tbs) honey
3/4 c warm water
2 c King Arthur white whole wheat flour
1 Tbl wheat gluten*
1 1/2 c unbleach AP flour (*OR use bread flour and no added gluten)
1 tsp salt
3 eggs, lightly beaten (reserve 1 Tbl for egg wash)
1/4 c vegetable/canola or ideally grape seed oil
- In the mixer bowl, combine the honey and warm water, swirl to combine. Sprinkle with yeast and let proof for 10 minutes.
- While yeast is proofing, in a small bowl lightly scramble the eggs, reserve 1 Tbl in a small covered container to use as the egg wash later (makes the challah shiny).
- After 10 minutes of yeast proofing, add everything else to the yeast, water, and honey mixture.
- Beat on medium low, with the dough hook, until a dough ball forms and there is no longer anything on the sides of the bowl (3-5 minutes).
- Scrape the dough off the mixer hook and remove the bowl and cover it. Let sit for 90 minutes (or cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight).
- If you refrigerate the dough punch it down and then let it warm up to room temperature, covered, for at least 90 minutes until it’s starting to poofy again.
- Sprinkle corn meal on a heavy baking sheet. Too much is better than too little, you can brush it off the baked challah.
- On a cutting board, divide into 3 or 4 parts (or 6 or 8 if you want 2 smaller loaves) and braid with oiled hands.
- Move braids to the prepared baking sheet(s) and cover with a tea towel; let rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375 F and prepare egg wash (combine reserved 1 Tbl lightly beaten egg with 1 Tbl of water, a tiny bit of honey or a pinch of sugar, and a pinch of salt) and possible toppings (un-toasted sesame seeds, poppy seeds, or pretzel salt). Brush challah with egg wash, top with seeds if desired.
- Bake 2 small challot at 350 for 25 minutes, bake larger challah for 30 minutes.