| PlateArt |

Crowned with Glory

Text and styling by Esther Ottensoser
Photography by Devorah Applegrad

When Chanie asked me to come up with creative round challah ideas, it instantly brought back cherished memories of my own childhood. The experience of creating unique challah braids together with my mother and sisters, where no two challos looked the same, filled our home with joy and creativity. This tradition has sown seeds of creativity, love, and quality time that I’m now passing on to you to create in your kitchens.

Honey Dish Challah

This challah takes a bit more effort than the others featured here, but it makes a beautiful centerpiece for your Rosh Hashanah table. This apple honey dish that I picked up at Trendsettings in Lakewood is one of the cutest and daintiest dishes I’ve ever seen.

You will need:
  • prepared challah dough
  • small ramekin
  • beaten egg
  • assorted seeds
  • small honey dish (available from Trendsettings in Lakewood)

Divide the dough into several small, equal-sized pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth ball. For a uniform appearance, weigh each dough ball to make sure they’re the same size. This will result in an even and beautifully shaped challah.

Divide one portion of the dough into small pieces. Roll the pieces into three small strands and braid them together to form a mini challah braid. Repeat this step several times. Lay the tiny braids across some of the dough balls, creating a pretty design.

Take a round pan and arrange the dough balls in a circular pattern, leaving the center empty for the honey dish. To keep the space open, place a small ramekin in the middle of the pan.

Brush the entire surface of the challah with egg wash, then generously sprinkle assorted seeds over the challah.

Bake the challah until golden. Before serving, place the honey dish inside it.

Crumb Braid Challah

This challah is super-impressive for the amount of time it takes to make. You can substitute the crumb with any type of seed. You can also do each section with a different type of seed.

You will need:
  • prepared challah dough
  • beaten egg
  • sweet crumbs

Take a portion of dough and gently roll it into a ball.

Braid two long, thin three-strand braids and cross them over the challah ball.

Brush the challah with egg. Add crumbs in the four sections, then bake until golden.

Poppy/Sesame Seed Challah

To make this challah, I dipped the strands completely in sesame seeds as opposed to sprinkling them on. The variations for this idea are endless. The strands can be dipped into any type of toppings and the other spaces can be left without seeds, or with whichever seeds you choose.

You will need:
  • prepared challah dough
  • beaten egg
  • sesame seeds
  • poppy seeds

Take a portion of dough and gently roll it into a ball.

Divide another piece of dough into four even parts and roll each piece into a strand, ensuring that each strand is of even thickness and length.

Prepare two bowls, one with beaten egg and one with sesame seeds.

Dip each strand into the egg, coating it thoroughly, then gently roll the egg-coated strand in sesame seeds, making sure that the seeds adhere evenly to the surface.

Arrange the four seeded strands across the challah in the pattern shown in the picture, or get creative with your own design. Take your time, and handle the strands with care so the challah looks neat.

Once your braided strands are in place, fill the remaining areas of the challah with poppy seeds.

Bake the challah until golden.


(Originally featured in Family Table, Issue 857)

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