The Israeli gluten free community, like gluten free communities in Europe, has fallen in love with Molino flour! Since it’s made with wheat, don’t worry the gluten protein has been removed, it is both motzei and delicious!
In my opinion it is the BEST flour for traditional tasting challah. While oat challah can be lovely, the oats have a distinct taste and texture. I promise, once you start using molino flour, you won’t go back to eating oat challah. If you are worried about eating a wheat derivative, here is a great post about why it is actually safe. (Of course, you know your body best and should do what works for you.)
I’ve seen a few “challah” recipes using this flour but for the most part they just taste like bread and lack the sweet flavor I crave when I think challah. Not this recipe! I like to use silan to give my challah a deeper brown color (plus its vegan) but feel free to replace it with more honey if you don’t have it on hand.
Molino Flour Challah
- 2 tbsp Active Dry Yeast
- 1 3/4 cup warm water plus more if needed
- 4 cups Molino Flour
- 3 eggs + 1 for egg wash later
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup sugar or honey
- 1 tbsp silan for more golden color, optional
- 3 tsp salt
- extra oil for braiding
- Place yeast into a large bowl, add the warm water and sugar, mix to dissolve and let sit for 5 minutes. It should bubble and that is how you know it is active.
- Add in the salt, egg, olive oil, and silan.
- Add the flour in slowly, I add it 1 cup at a time. You want to make sure you add just enough to create a dough but not too much that it gets dry. Knead the dough until combined- it should be a fairly wet dough.
- Continue to knead the dough (I use a dough hook) for about 5 minutes. It should create a slightly wet dough ball that is sticky to touch but still manageable.
- Cover the dough and let it sit in a warm spot for 1.5 hours to rise. A proofing bowl is the best for this and helps get a consistent rise.
- Once the dough has doubled in size, cut the dough into equal sections depending on challah size you would like. I typically do four small challot so I cut it into 12.
- Braid the dough, it will be wet and sticky but if you oil your hands you will be able to braid. Be patient and continue to oil your hands to prevent sticking. Don’t flour the surface as it adds too much flour into the dough and will dry it out.
- Leave the braided challot to sit again for 30-60 minutes, they should rise again to nearly double the size.
- The dough should make 2 large challot, 3 medium challot, or 5 tiny ones. Before putting them to rise a second time, I like to freeze any braided dough I wont be using this week and bake it at a later time. The challah keeps better this way than freezing fully baked challot.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Wash with egg wash or with coconut oil / silan/ olive oil and bake the challot on 180 C until golden, about 45 minutes.
Of course, you can also always add toppings to jazz up your challah. My favorite topping is a gluten free crumble made from a little flour, butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Additionally, sesame seeds, Everything but the Bagel seasoning, and garlic confit make great toppings.
You can order the flour I use on amazon, in America, King Arthur has a similar blend but I have yet to try it myself. I recently shared my best gluten free challah making tips on Instagram, you can watch the full video below.
In Jerusalem you can find the flour at Gluless, Rus El Hanut, and Mizrachi (in the shuk). Also, it’s available for order from Happy Gluty, Guluten and Tenjoy.
Read about my challah journey and how celiac disease affects Jewish practice here.