Fig, Olive Oil and Sea Salt Challah

Ahhh, Smitten Kitchen. Another one of my favorite non-vegan blogs. Deb is always makin’ all kinds of yummy treats. When I saw this recipe for challah, I knew making it was in my future. A vegan challah could not be easier to make. For an egg based bread, it really doesn’t need the eggs. The only thing I haven’t quite perfected is how to get my challah all shiny once it’s done. I read around on the interwebs and saw that some suggested maple syrup or a sweetener of the like, but I didn’t want the outside of my bread to be sticky or sweet. So, I ended up brushing the little bastard in some unsweetened almond milk. The top of the bread browned nicely, but alas, no shine to be had. Is it still challah without the shine? Today, well, today I say yes.

For the vegan edits, here is what I did:

¼ c honey—I used honey. I’ve discussed my take on honey here before and on other vegan blogs who have posed the question—so let’s not get into it now. If you don’t want to use humane, farm fresh honey, go ahead and sub it out in equal parts for that neat Bee-Free Honee stuff or agave.

For the eggs, I used 2 flax eggs. 1 tbsp ground golden flax mixed with 3 tbsp water. Let them sit for just a minute to thicken and add them when the recipe calls for eggs.

If you’re not in the mood to make the fig filling from scratch and want a shortcut, Trader Joe’s has a nice fig butter that would work perfectly here.

For the egg wash, just use unsweetened non-dairy milk and go crazy with the Maldon flakes….which ps, those Malden salt flakes are cool. I purchased them just for this bread, but I’m excited to use the rest of the stuff in the future.

As for braiding, my braid may or may not have been a tad funky. Braiding a traditional long challah loaf is easy, but braiding the loaf into a circle? Damn.

The innards of this bread looked pretty cool.

9 Comments on “Fig, Olive Oil and Sea Salt Challah

  1. Why is everything you make picture-perfect all the time? Don’t worry – I’m not jealous – just tremendously impressed! You inspire me! As I pulled my humble little poundcake out of the oven tonight, I thought of your creations and smiled. 🙂

    • You are too sweet! I love creating smiles, all I want is to make pie and make people smile and full. Really full of pie. 🙂 I was just heading over to your blog to wish you and your family well!

  2. BEAUTIFUL! You know what would shine it up? A cornstarch wash! Mix some cornstarch (about 1/2 tsp) in with a little water in a microwaveable coffee cup to make a paste. Add 1/2 cup of water then whisk with a fork. Microwave it for a minute on high until it becomes “glassy.” Let it cool a bit then brush it on right before baking. Works!

    Vegan Fazool Blog
    MoFo Theme: Homesteading it (and I’ll be doing a bread or two!)

  3. Oh, btw, make sure you boil the wash. It usually doesn’t take much more than a minute in the microwave, but it DOES need to boil. Then it becomes “glassy,” it needs to do that to get shiny later.


    • OMG, Thank you! I was really struggling with getting the shiny top–this is awesome. I’m going to bake another bread and use this trick really soon! Thanks again! 🙂

      • Sure! So glad I could help! Now, gotta get back to my biggest ever CSA haul and decide what the heck I’m gonna make 🙂 If it included a bag of flour, I’d be set 🙂

  4. I love Deb’s recipes! You’re challah looks so good, I’m all over the fig idea, it sounds incredible. To give things more of a shine, I usually go with a cornstarch, coconut milk, margarine mixture.

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