I love get-togethers, not only because they bring all my favorite people together but they are an excuse to bake! It’s been awhile since I’ve baked anything other than my favorite quick pumpkin bread. So staying with my favorite theme– pumpkin but wanting to add my new favorite flavor, sage, I decided to make a pumpkin-sage challah loaf. This is a yeast bread so definitely exploring new territory. I’ve made yeast breads in the form of bagels and rolls before but my loafs have never turned out too great.
This recipe looked too delicious to pass up. Plus my mom was in favor of making it so I could I say no? Here’s my adapted recipe below from: Savory Simple
Pumpkin-Sage Challah Loaf
- 3/4 cup warm water
- 1 T yeast
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 2 oz butter, melted but cooled
- 5 cups bread flour
- 7.5 oz pumpkin puree
- 3 T sugar (I used 1 T brown sugar + 2 T cane sugar)
- .5 T salt
- 1 T cinnamon
- 1 T pumpkin pie spice
- 2 tsp. dried sage
- Egg wash (1 egg beaten)
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk the warm water and yeast. Allow the mixture to sit for 3 minutes.
- Add eggs, melted butter, salt, sugar, spices, pumpkin and whisk until smooth.
- Add 2 cups of flour and whisk until smooth. Continue adding flour and combining, switching to your hands when the dough becomes too thick for the whisk. Fold out onto a lightly floured surface.
- Knead the dough for 5 minutes. It should be soft and smooth, not sticky. If the dough is sticky simply incorporate more flour while kneading, around 1/4 cup at a time until it’s no longer sticking. You can use a small amount of canola oil on your hands as well.
- Round the dough into a ball and place in a clean, lightly oiled bowl (use canola or vegetable oil, something neutral), cover, and allow to double in size. This works well in a warm area, such as on top of your oven set to a low temperature. Don’t rush this step, really let the dough rise.
- Remove the cover, punch the dough back down, cover again, and place in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight.
- Divide dough into 3 equal portions, join together at the top.
- Rub each inside edge with dry sage
- Braid the pieces together.
- Roll, pinch and turn under the ends under to close loaf.
- Proof until double in size.
- Brush with egg wash.
- Bake at 400 degrees until golden brown, about 40-45 minutes.
- Brush with butter (or honey butter) while hot.