potato challah

Around this time two years ago I began begging Eggboy for a pet pig for my birthday. I’ve always loved pigs (it goes hand in hand with my marzipan obsession since when I was little I collected marzipan pigs) and after living on a farm for a few years, it seemed like the time was right to get one. 

Ok, but we’re going to name him Potato, said Eggboy.

That’s a cute name!! But why?

So that when we eat him we can just say we’re eating Potato and confuse all of our friends.


That kind of ended that.

And that’s all I have to say about potatoes at the moment other than that there are real actual potatoes in this challah dough, not pigs. And there are potatoes of an unknown variety growing in our garden! And idk why it took me this long to put mashed potatoes in challah. I loved potato sandwich bread and potato bagels from Einstein growing up because, well you know me, I've always been one for soft doughy bread over a crusty baguette. So this year for Rosh Hashanah when I was having my routine challah brainstorm, my mind went to the humble potato.

If you thought that a perfectly baked loaf of doughy eggy challah could not get any better, well just add a cup of mashed potatoes to your dough and watch it get even softer. And richer! It’s a subtle difference, you can’t really taste potato *flavor*, but eating it is a similar sensation to hugging a friend who you haven’t seen in a while and feeling a stronger, more robust embrace, the kind of arms that make you step back, do a once over, and ask, you been workin out?  

Potato challah is regular challah that has been going to the gym all summer. 

So, you know, the recipe here is not very different from the challah that you were going to make next week. Just do all of us two favors: add mashed potato to the dough, and when proofing the yeast, use the water that you used to boil the potato instead of regular plain jane water. Works like a charm! Sounds like we’re all going to have fabulous New Years. 

Ok so to shape it, you can either just make one huge long snake and coil it up into a round swirly shape, as I’ve done in past years. Or you can make four strands and make a circular braid. It looks a lot more complicated than it really is. I have all of the faith in the world that you can do it. Here is a slower version of the braiding video that I posted on IG the other day. Plz forgive the background banter between chantell, brett, and me. Or just don't turn the sound on haha. My non-existent video editing skills are exactly non-existent: 

potato challah

makes 2 loaves


8 oz peeled potatoes, cut into 1” cubes
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1 tsp + 2 tb sugar
4 c (504g) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tsp kosher salt
2 large eggs
1/3 c (66g) flavorless oil, like canola or vegetable
2 tb (42g) honey

egg wash + topping:

1 beaten egg
poppy seeds, sesame seeds, other seeds, optional


Place the chopped potato in a large pot and cover it with water. Bring to a simmer and cook until a fork pokes easily into the potato, begin checking for doneness at about 10 minutes. Drain the potato, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Let the potato cool, mash it, and set it aside. Once the cooking water has cooled to be warm (about 105º-110ºf), add the yeast and the 1 teaspoon of sugar. Give it a little swirl and let it sit for about 5 minutes, until foamy on top. Meanwhile, in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the flour, salt, and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil, and honey. When the yeast mixture is foamy, add it to the dry mixture, followed by the egg mixture and mashed potatoes. Stir to form a shaggy dough and then either knead it on a clean surface or in the stand mixer, adding flour if it gets too sticky to handle. Knead until the dough is smooth and just slightly sticky, 7-10 minutes. Transfer to an oiled bowl, cover with a towel or plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled in size, 1-2 hours. 

Preheat the oven to 375ºf and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Turn the dough out onto a clean surface, divide it into two equal parts, and shape according to the notes and video above. Transfer the loaves to the baking sheets. Cover and let rise for another 30 minutes. Brush the loaves with a light coating of egg wash and sprinkle with seeds, if using. Bake until the loaves are golden brown and have an internal temp of about 190ºf. Begin checking for doneness at 25 minutes. 

Let cool until it is jusssst cool enough that it won’t burn your mouth, then smother it with butter and hope that there will be some left for dinner that night. Hehe. 

oh here are some more challah recipes!! 

apple & honey muffins

alright so as of right now, my rosh hashanah menu consists of:


more challah


and these apple and honey muffins (when i imagined myself getting all sticky from balancing a jar of honey and slicing an apple in the cramped little cab of a tractor, i got all squirmy...)

do i need to have a vegetable? i should probably have a vegetable. who has easily transportable autumn-y vegetable recipe suggestions??

and maybe i'll try to stuff some matzo balls down the nozzle of our big tall thermos.

i've never been the biggest fan of honey cake. either that, or by the time dessert rolls around i'm just so stuffed with brisket and challah that i could give zero shits about what the dessert table looks like. guilt came over me this year though when i realized that i've been treating a cake--a cake!--with such little love and respect. so i fiddled with it, failed a bunch, read five thousand recipes, pulled knowledge that i learned from my homemade funfetti® process, and came up with a honey cake that i am proud to call a friend.

this is a no-pressure, low-commitment honey cake that is actually a muffin, so you can get away with eating it at breakfast, lunch, or whenever you want. you do not need to wait until after brisket. you can load the sucker up with cream cheese, yogurt, buttercream, or any other dairy product of your affection and be 100% kosher about it. and you can even toss it around a tractor as your fiancé chisel plows and you let your challah digest. the texture is on the pleasingly denser side and the honey doesn't overpower. apples keep it *moist* and just a teensy bit of whiskey in the batter adds a yummy little zing while leaving you more than enough to sip on while you celebrate. 

apple + honey muffins

makes 12-16


2 c all-purpose flour

1 c sugar

3/4 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp cloves

a pinch of cardamom

2 large eggs

1/3 c vegetable oil

1/2 c honey

2 tb whiskey

1/4 c hot coffee

1 large apple, chopped


preheat oven to 350, and line and grease a muffin tin. 

in a medium bowl, combine all dry ingredients. in a large bowl, combine eggs, oil, honey, and whiskey. whisk in the dry ingredients and then whisk in the coffee. fold in the chopped apple and then scoop into your muffin tin.

bake until golden brown and a toothpick stuck into the center comes out clean. begin checking for doneness at about 20 minutes.

let cool and enjoy!

i like sprinkling them with powdered sugar or plopping a nice blob of yogurt on top. 



ingredients for this recipe were provided by minnesota grown, which makes it easier for minnesota ladies (like me!) and gents to support their local farmers! thanks, minnesota grown!!!

p.s. the winner of last week's giveaway has been notified! 

brown sugar challah with pomegranate glaze + friday links

it's a two-challah week. that's not weird, right? (actually when you consider the testing and a camera breakdown, it was probably more like a twelve-challah week so ask me if i've gotten sick of challah, i dare you.)

this is my interpretation of a fashionable loaf. it's got drizzlies of pink, swirls of brown, bling blings of sugar, and a well-tanned epidermis. it's fit for a party and its plus one is brisket. and the recipe is over at barneys new york! i'm extremely excited because i used to stroll into barneys all the time on my little walks home to the upper west side. would you believe it that my splurges used to be marc jacobs and denim, not sprinkles and danskware? i certainly wouldn't.

here are some friday links!


you all made crazy shit this week, i made a lot of audible gasps: i mean, cilantro in peanut ice cream, stroopwaffels in whipped cream, furikake on popcorn?! yes. lots and lots of yes.

i guess i spaced out when this single came out last month, but stars' "from the night" is really scrumptious.

every so often i go down the youtube rabbit hole of batsheva dance videos. i found this one this week and it is ripe with perfection.

can i call this a mac + cheese cake?? (and would these kinda be mac + cheese cupcakes??)

and speaking of cake, just look at this hazelnut fig one. it is art.

i've obviously been going though meryl and charlie withdrawal, but check out kaitlin and jean luc!

this week in tahini (i should just set a google alert for it already): tahini pine nut cookies, no-churn tahini ice cream, and mini cakes with tahini frosting.

so many hearts.

the wholesome midwesternness in me doesn't really like describing things as sexy, but when i read this cucumber salad recipe, i couldn't think of any other word.

marzipan body scrub you guys!!!!!!!!!! 

there are still a few days to enter my easy gourmet giveaway!

happy weekend everyone!!!!!


p.s. it's come to my attention that some of you are having trouble commenting. oyoyoy! i'm working on having this fixed right now. feel free to bop over to my Facebook page to comment in the meantime! 

marzipan challah

things i've been enjoying lately

offering everyone who comes over a buttercup squash from our garden

using the eggdad's typewriter to make cute little food labels, greeting cards, business cards, secret notes...

the fact that the sun has finally been going down before our (almost) nightly 10pm veep date

picking chamomile flowers from our garden (does anyone have any tips on a) getting the itsy bitsy bugs off of them so i can b) dry them and make tea?)

my tuesday night pottery class! i made a plate yesterday.

dark chocolate and sea salt kind bars

picking the caramel off of the caramel apples that have been sitting on my counter since saturday

making an extra over-the-top eye roll whenever someone tries to correct my pronunciation of "caramel"

getting excited for rosh hashanah!!!! 

...you know, i don't even remember what i did for rosh hashanah last year. i feel like i might have been salty about the fact that eggboy would have had to have been on a tractor during one of my favorite holidays. but this year i'm embracing it and planning to pack up a badass brisket picnic (complete with pomegranate brisket tacos) to bring out to the tractor. i've already told him to make sure that he's driving a tractor with a buddy seat so that i don't have to perch on his armrest and get my bum all sore. i'll also be packing up: apples from our apple trees, honey from eggsister's man's bees, and challah, obviously challah. even gluten-free eggboy will eat challah.

about this challah: the combination was bound to happen sometime, judging from my love of all things marzipan and all things challahbreads bakery, in new york, makes a marzipan challah, and i went on a wild goose chase trying to figure out how they do it. pictures of it kept popping up on my instagram and i kept wishing i could go-go-gadget x-ray vision it, but finally i just went for it and made a marzipan frosting to swirl about. the results were sweet and moist* and almondy and doughy and delicious. perfect for the new year.

(shortly thereafter, marian came to the rescue (again) with the intel that breads makes theirs by simply wrapping dough around almond paste and then braiding it. so i tried that and it was also delicious.)

*what is a synonym for moist? i hate subjecting you guys to that word. 

marzipan challah

makes two loaves (easily half-able if you just want one)



1 1/2 c warm water

2 tb dry yeast

1/2 c + 1 tb sugar

6 c all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting (you might need way more, so i like to have 1-2 more cups on hand)

2 tsp kosher salt

a pinch of cardamom

5 large eggs

2/3 c oil

1 tsp almond extract


14 oz marzipan, grated or finely chopped

1 stick butter, softened

1/2 c sugar

1 1/2 tsp almond extract

topping (optional)

slivered almonds

pearl sugar

**for a non-dairy or easier option, you can simply omit the butter and sprinkle the marzipan and sugar onto your dough when shaping. it will still be super delish.    






In a measuring cup or small bowl, combine the water, yeast, and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Let sit for a few minutes until it gets foamy on top.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix together the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, flour, salt, and cardamom. In a separate bowl, whisk together 4 of the eggs, the oil, and the almond extract.

When the yeast has proofed, add it to the dry ingredients, immediately followed by the egg mixture. Mix to combine and knead, either on a floured surface, or with the dough hook for 7-10 minutes, adding more flour as needed, until smooth.

Transfer to an oiled bowl, cover with a damp towel, and let rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours.

to make the filling, beat together all ingredients. the marzipan will stay a little chunky.

on a lightly floured surface, divide the dough into two equal parts. working with one part at a time (keep the other part covered by the damp towel), roll the dough out into a large rectangle, approximately 10 inches by 14 inches. spread half of the filling evenly onto the dough, leaving a 1-inch perimeter, and then roll it up like a jelly roll (the long way). pinch the edges to seal it shut, and then coil into a spiral shape with the seam facing down. place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and repeat with the other half of the dough. let the loaves rise for 30 minutes while you preheat your oven to 375.

whip up the remaining egg with a splash of water and brush it onto the loaves after they've risen. sprinkle with slivered almonds and pearl sugar, if using. bake the loaves for 20 minutes, rotate them and tent them with foil, and then bake for another 20 minutes.

let cool briefly and enjoy!


p.s. it's come to my attention that some of you are having trouble commenting. oyoyoy! i'm working on having this fixed right now. feel free to bop over to my Facebook page to comment in the meantime!