Challah Braided Bread (and variations…)

When my sisters and I were kids, my mom used to make us this delicious braided bread during our final exams. She’d put different fillings in each strand of the braid for each of us. It was so wonderful to sit at the dinner table and smell fresh bread baking in the bread machine while studying. Everything was wonderful except for the actual studying part, of course. Anyway, a few weeks back I went on a bread-making kick (read: I decided I need to start studying for the GRE, which of course meant I needed a new obsession). These are just some of my Challah-related creations, including one that is braided with different fillings in each strand.

Here is a three strand, simple braided bread:


With filling, of course – Danish cheese and delicious berry jam that my sister made.


I was super happy with how gloriously easy it is to make impressive looking bread by braiding it. Way easier than getting my hair to stay in a simple three strand braid. Which of course prompted me to immediately make another loaf of bread, this time with four strands.


Of course, I make the dough before checking to see what fillings I’d be able to muster up without venturing out into the cold outdoors (yay, Chicago!). After surveying the deepest darkest corners of both my cupboards and my fridge, I decide to just keep it simple… no fillings! Which then prompted french bread for breakfast the next morning…


Pictured here with thick cut bacon. Just because.

Here is the basic recipe I used to make the Challah.

Happy baking!


Pull-Apart Garlic Paprika Bread (Garlic Bubble Loaf)

Hello all!

First, a picture of Kenneth officially adding Strawberry Nutella Macarons to his list of strawberry treats that he loves!


It is rainy, cold, humid, and gloomy today in Evanston — perfect baking weather! Today, I decided to go with something salty.

I used and adapted this recipe from My Kitchen Addiction. These are the adjustments that I made: I upped the amount of garlic powder(I LOVE GARLIC!), included fresh garlic (did I mention, I LOVE GARLIC), added some sesame oil, and used black sesame instead of white sesame. Basically I wanted more garlic flavor and only had black sesame…

Anyway, here are the pictures:


This is a mixture of melted butter, a few drops of sesame oil, paprika, and garlic powder.


I did not make any adjustments to the dough, so please refer to the recipe I mentioned above if you are interested in making this! They’re so cute!


Here’s the picture of the finished product, pre-sesame, and pre-baking!


The pan I used was a little bit too small, which made the bread a little “bubblier” than anticipated.


and it seems the oven temp could have been brought down a little bit… the top was a little more browned than I would’ve liked.


The bread pulls apart easily, and is nice and buttery. omnomnom!

Overall, I’d say it turned out well. And even if it doesn’t look amazing, it tastes and smells great! I have to say the texture of the bread itself reminds me of the breads that you get in Taiwan. It is a bit fluffier and softer than bread that is purchased here. I think I might try to make a sweet version of this someday. My mother used to make this delicious braided bread with cream cheese filling right around midterms and finals time, and I’ve always wanted to try and recreate that.  After all, I do still have two packets of yeast waiting to be used!
Until next time, friends! ❤