Water Challah: Maggie Glezer’s Lithuanian Challah

My husband wanted a less sweet and much chewier challah than the ABin5 challah, so I made a batch of Lithuanian Challah from Maggie Glezer’s book A Blessing of Bread.

Despite being a water challah (i.e., no eggs in the dough), the crumb was not pure white, but more of a creamy color. I realize that in the below picture, the crumb does look white, but–trust me–it was not as white as the crumb of bakery water challah. Of course, that could be related to the bakery using different flour or longer mixing times or more powerful mixing equipment.

Anyway, the recipe yielded a lot of cute little 8 ounce challahs:

I baked some of them as single strand twisted oval rolls, some were baked in mini loaf pans (the Lithuanian challah is traditionally made in pans, says Glezer),and some I baked in similarly sized oval challah pans.

If you want a higher rising challah, oval pans give you a very nice shape.

The stores here now sell disposable oval pans, but a while ago I bought a range of oval pans from Kerekes. Lots of other places carry them.

This challah dough is good for making pletzel .

A couple of other points: this bread is baked at a much higher temperature than her other challah (425-450 degrees), which I like much better. I like a deeply browned crust. Also, this recipe can be adapted to make a sourdough challah (see page 120).

Bottom line: my husband loved this challah and also loved the French toast I made with leftovers.

I’m sending this over to YeastSpotting.

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8 Responses to “Water Challah: Maggie Glezer’s Lithuanian Challah”

  1. Julia @ Mélanger Says:

    Really interesting that you didn’t use eggs. How did it taste? Was it still rich?

  2. Laura Says:


    The challah tasted delicious. It still had some richness from added sugar and oil. Plus there was some eggy flavor from the egg glaze.

    I guess the difference would be like the difference between cinnamon buns made from a lean(er) dough rather than a brioche dough. Still yummy, just not quite as rich.

  3. Joanne Says:

    Hmmm I’ve never had a water challah before, only an enriched one. It sounds delicious! A lighter option for challah for sure!

  4. Stefanie Says:

    Sounds delicious. After eating so much sweet things during the holidays a leaner version of sweet bread is a good idea.

  5. YeastSpotting January 1, 2010 | Wild Yeast Says:

    […] Lithuanian Challah […]

  6. lisamichele Says:

    I am a challah fiend, and I have to say, yours is one of the prettiest I have ever seen. Looks nice and doughy in the middle too, the way challah should be 🙂

  7. Bejma: Tunisian Challah « Pragmatic Attic Says:

    […] braiding technque) Tamar Ansh Round Braid Whole Wheat Challah (Peter Reinhart, but my variation) Lithuania Challah (Maggie Glezer) ABin5 Challah (Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day) Apple Honey Challah (Got Kosher, LA Times) 100 […]

  8. Talya Bernstein Galaganov Says:

    I have the book. This is my favorite recipe, though there are lots of interesting recipes and stories of the Jewish community in which they originated. This challah stays fresh a long time. Chewy and yummy.

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