Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Challah Bread French Toast

Happy Wednesday!

A big thanks to everyone for all the nice comments and emails about yesterday’s Challah Bread!

I couldn’t wait to slice it up today!


Today I turned that loaf into some delicious french toast. This is a great dish for a Sunday Brunch, you start it on the stove and let it finish in the oven.

This recipe comes from  Rachel Ray’s Crunchy Vanilla-Almond French Toast with Fancy Fruit Topping. I made a few changes and omitted the sauce, but if I were to make this for a brunch I would be sure to add the fruit topping.

Challah Bread French Toast

  • 6 eggs
  • 3/4  cup half n’ half
  • 2 tsps. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbl real maple syrup
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 tsps. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 tsps. cinnamon
  • 4 cups whole grain cereal flakes (I used Kashi)
  • 1/2 cups almonds, roughly chopped
  • 16 slices thick cut challah bread
  1. Beat the eggs, half n’ half, vanilla, syrup, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon in a shallow dish. Lightly crush the cereal flakes, combine with the almonds and add to another shallow dish.
  2. Warm a large skillet with cooking spray over medium heat. Dip the bread slices into the egg mixture and then the cereal mixture. Cook the slices for 2 minutes on each side.
  3. Transfer slices to a baking sheet and place into a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes.  Serve with syrup.

Makes 16 servings





I love the crunch of the toast along with the nutty flavor that the almonds develop after being cooked! Only way to serve this  is with some real maple syrup!


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Challah Bread

Today I though I’d share a recipe for Challah bread. I learned how to make it a few years ago from my bread baking class and it turned out to be a huge hit with my family!
I love this recipe because it uses the straight dough method which is basically measuring out all the ingredients, putting in a mixer and letting the mixer do all the work. The fun part is watching the dough rise so its doubled in size then braiding it not to mention the beautiful shiny golden color it bakes into! Let’s get started!
(You will need a kitchen scale in order to weigh most of the ingredients)
Challah Bread
  • 8 oz. warm water
  • .75 oz. yeast
  • 1 lb. 4oz. bread flour
  • 4 oz. egg yolks (reserve the egg whites for the egg wash)
  • 1.5 oz. sugar
  • 2 oz. canola oil
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 2 tsp. salt
  1. Add the yeast to the warm water and let it sit for about 5 minutes till it’s nice and bubbly.
  2. Next measure out the rest of the ingredients into your mixer bowl and add the yeast mixture. Attached the dough hook to your mixer and set it on the second speed for 10 minutes. The dough will come together into a ball, take it out and kneed it a few times by hand.
  3. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a towel and let it sit in a sunny window for 1.5 hours,  till it’s doubled in size.
  4. Take it out and gently pressed it down and divide the dough into three equal pieces. Roll out each piece into an 18 inch log. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and braid the three logs. (Make sure you squeeze both ends and tuck them under so they will stay together while baking. )
  5. Now make the egg wash by whipping up the reserved eggs white with a touch of water until they are foamy and brush over the loaf.
  6. Cover it again loosely with some plastic wrap and set it in the window for 30 minutes for it’s final rise.
  7. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 30-35 minutes, until its lightly browned.
Look at how much it doubles in size!
Final rise before baking!
And this is what you get 30 minutes later, isn’t the color beautiful and shiny?!
Here’s a nice close up, I wish you could smell it! There is nothing better than the smell of freshly baked bread. The poor dogs have been hovering by my feet all morning hoping to sneak a piece!
Anyone can make this, it really is simply you just have to take into consideration the time it takes for the bread to rise.
I can’t wait to show you what I am going to turn this into for a great brunch idea!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Catching Up with Some Kale Chips

April is such an odd month around here with Winter finally on its way out and Spring trying to make an appearance. The same goes for sports in our family, Kailey has just finished up her longer-than-usual basketball season making it all the way to the New England Regional Finals. We lost our first game by a couple baskets by a girl who we could have passed as Shaq’s sister…she was that tall!

Here’s a pic I took at the tip off of the game. You can’t see Kailey’s face (she’s at center) but you can see her feet and how far she tried to jump for the ball (keep in mind Kailey is taller than me and the tallest on her team) all while  her opponent’s feet didn’t even leave the floor! lol Needless to say the poor girls were swatting at flies the rest of  the game trying to get the ball!


So with basketball wrapped up and no more traveling for games, I am thrilled to have more time on the weekends to spend in the kitchen…hence my lack of recipes on the blog lately!

The other night I did manage to cook up something that I have been wanting to try for quit some time, kale chips. Everyone in the food blog world raves about them and now I know why!

Kale Chips

  • 1 head of Kale
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • parmesan cheese


Preheat oven too 325 degrees. Take the kale leaves off of the stems and tear into bite size pieces. Wash them thoroughly, I put mine in a salad spinner to get them nice and dry.



Next, toss the kale with the olive oil and s&p, spread out on a sheet pan. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.


Bake for about 15-20 minutes. The kale should be crispy and slightly browned around the edges. Keep an eye on them, toss them half way through as they can burn very easily!


They definitely are crispy and delicate. I loved the addition of the cheese, it added just the right amount of saltiness! The girls weren’t around to give them a try but hubby was and lets just say he is hooked!

Next time I will be adding some apple cider vinegar instead of cheese, I am a sucker for salt n’ vinegar chips!

Want to jump on the kale chip bandwagon?

Go ahead and give them a try if you haven’t already, you just might surprise yourself!