Balsamic Strawberry Challah
by Gemma Fitzpatrick
Christmas is such a busy time of year that a baking ritual is a lovely way to slow down and take a breather. We even recommend kneading the dough by hand, it may be a little harder than in a mixer but it’s a great way to clear your head. Challah is a great dairy-free option for brioche, enriched with oil instead of butter, the swirls are best eaten warm on the day, they’ll disappear in no time.
- 1 cup Almond Milk (or other plant-based milk)
- 3 tsp Active Dried Yeast
- 1/4 cup Chantal Golden Sugar
- 4 cups (plus extra 1/4 cup for kneading) Chantal Zentrofan 7 Grain Flour
- 1 tsp Chantal Fine Sea Salt
- 3 Organic Free Range Eggs
- 1/2 cup Olive Oil
- 3 tbsp Chantal Brown Rice Syrup
- 2 punnets Organic Strawberries
- 2 tbsp Chantal Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 tbsp Chantal Chia Seeds
- 1 tbsp Chantal Apple Syrup
- 6 tbsp Organic Powdered Sugar
- 2 tbsp Almond Milk (or other plant-based milk)
1. In a small pan warm almond milk until its lukewarm or just warm to the touch. Pour this into a bowl to stop any further heating and sprinkle on yeast and 1 tbsp of the sugar. Leave for a few minutes and prep your other ingredients.
2. Add the remaining sugar, 4 cups of flour & the salt to a large bowl. Mix well to combine. In a separate bowl whisk together eggs, oil & syrup.
3. Once the yeast mixture is foamy add to the flour bowl and then pour in the other liquids. Use a spatula to roughly combine.
4. Dust a clean surface liberally with extra flour. Turn the dough out of the bowl on top. Knead the dough well for around 10 minutes. It should be starting to become less sticky and much smoother. When pulled it will be stretchy like mozzarella. You may need to add a little more flour if the dough is really hard to handle, up to an extra 1/4 cup as per ingredients.
5. When ready, place dough into a clean, oiled bowl and cover with a damp tea towel. Place in a warm spot and leave to proof. Depending on temperature the dough will need anything from 1-2 hours. At this point, you can place the bowl in the fridge to proof overnight if you’re planning an early breakfast.
6. Whilst the dough is proving, make your jam. In a pan combine strawberries, halved, balsamic vinegar & apple syrup, cook for 10 minutes or until strawberries are soft. Take off the heat and add chia seeds, stir gently to combine and cool.
7. Grease a 12 hole muffin tin with oil.
8. Once the dough has doubled in size, turn out onto a freshly clean, floured surface and press gently out into a large rectangle, about 1cm thick.
9. Spread the jam evenly over the rectangle right to the edges. Roll using the long side into a big challah log. Cut into 12 pieces and place each in the tin. Cover with a tea towel to rest for 10 minutes and preheat your oven to 180°c.
10. Bake challah for 20-25 mins until they are golden and sound hollow when tapped. Turn out onto a cooling rack.
11. Make the glaze by whisking sugar and milk together until smooth. To serve challah pour glaze over whilst still slightly warm.