Pumpkin season arrived here in our house in a flurry! As soon as the calendar officially turned from summer to fall, the pumpkin baking frenzy began. It has not stopped since that day, and there is not one customer here complaining!
There has been pumpkin breads (quick and yeast), pumpkin pies, pumpkin pancakes. We have been baking with pumpkin every week! I can't be the only one that adores pumpkin baking this much.
So when it was time to get to our November theme of Pumpkin for #TwelveLoaves, I was sure I knew what I would make. I wasn't going to mess around and think about the idea for days. I went straight to something I knew we all loved: Pumpkin Challah Bread!
#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party created by Lora from Cake Duchess and run with the help of Heather of girlichef, which runs smoothly with the help of our bakers.
Our host this month is Renee from Kudos Kitchen by Renee, and our theme is Pumpkin.
- Cranberry Pumpkin Rolls from Karen's Kitchen Stories
- Cream Cheese Filled Pumpkin Muffins from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Crusty Pumpkin Rosemary Bread from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Giant Pumpkin Spice Cinnamon Rolls from girlichef
- Pumpkin Challah Bread from Cake Duchess
- Pumpkin Chocolate Pocky Muffins from NinjaBaking.com
- Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls from A Shaggy Dough Story
- Pumpkin Seed Breadsticks from Never Enough Thyme
- Savory Ginger Pumpkin Spice Bread from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Spice Pumpkin Bread from Basic N Delicious
Some notes on the bread: because of the addition of pumpkin, the dough is a little more wet than my typical challah bread. I did add a little more flour than I normally do (maybe 5 cups instead of 4 1/2) The dough yields two large braids. You could create so many other shapes with this dough. I found this gorgeous pumpkin challah centerpiece. Such a great idea for Thanksgiving! I even found one shaped like turkey! Here is a video on how to make a pumpkin challah bread. I can't forget to mention how wonderful the bread is to use for French toast (if you have any leftover!).
Pumpkin Challah Bread
- 1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup warm water (no more than 110°F [43°C])
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 4 1/2 to 5 cups bread flour, or 5 1/2 to 6 cups bleached all-purpose flour
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup peanut, corn, or canola oil
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Egg wash:
- 1 egg yolk
- 1½ teaspoons water
- In a mixer, with a dough hook attachment, add the warm water and yeast. Mix until blended. Add the sugar and mix about a minute. Let the yeast work its magic for at least 10 minutes (the yeast should bubble).
- Slowly mix in 1 cup of the flour until combined. Mix in the eggs one at a time until they are combined. Add another 2 cups of the flour, oil, pumpkin and salt. Mix together on medium-low speed stopping the machine to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Slowly add the rest of the flour (the remaining 4 cups) and mix until combined. Stop the machine as you add each cup of the flour to scrape the sides of the bowl and incorporate the flour. Because of the pumpkin, you may need to add a little more flour until it's the right texture. Mix on low speed for 12 minutes until dough is incorporated. Be sure to give your mixer a break and as you don’t want to burn it out. Add flour if needed 1 tablespoon at a time. The dough will be a little sticky but also firm.
- Take dough out of mixer bowl. Form the dough into a ball and place into an oiled bowl (when I put the dough in the bowl I swish the dough around the bottom of the bowl and then flip it over so all of the dough is covered in a light film of oil. I use vegetable oil). Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise at room temperature until doubled in size (about 1-1 1/2 hours).
- Punch down the dough. Divide dough in half. Divide the each portion into 3 equal portions (you will have 6 portions). Shape each portion into a ball, and allow it to rest with plastic wrap on it for 5-10 minutes.
- Roll each dough ball into long piece. Braid the 3 strands together to form a loaf. Place the braided bread on parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat the process with the other 3 portions of dough. Cover and let rise in a draft free place for about 45 minutes to 1 hour. While resting, preheat oven to 350 F.
- When ready to bake, brush with egg wash.
- Bake the challah for 35-40 minutes (on 350 F). The bread should be golden brown. Ovens may vary so check your challah at about 30 minutes and see how it’s doing. You test if it’s done by tapping the bottom of the loaf. If it sounds hollow, it needs a bit more time.* Be careful to not burn your fingers like I did when you do that test. Let it cool and serve slightly warm or at room temperature