Challah Mummy’s PJ Library Purim Challah Crown

Purim is one of our favourite times of the year in the Challah Mummy Kitchen because we have the chance to design, shape and bake challah which is covered in sprinkles and edible gold dust! This Purim, my children wanted to make a Purim Challah Crown fit for our brave heroine, Queen Esther. They are huge fans of the PJ Library books which are posted through our door each month so we were thrilled to have the chance to make a Purim Challah Crown for PJ Library. Here’s our challah recipe so you can join in the fun at home and make your own Purim Challah Crowns!

Purim Challah Crown Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1.5 kilos of plain flour (approx.)
  • 1½ cups of lukewarm water
  • 1 portion of fresh yeast (approx. 40g, otherwise 1 tablespoon of active dried yeast)
  • 6-8 tablespoons of caster sugar (plus one more teaspoon to mix in with the yeast)
  • 2 eggs (plus one more egg white for the egg wash)
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • ¼ cup of sunflower oil
  • Sprinkles, edible gold dust and edible pearls for decorating

Method

First, pour the lukewarm water into a big mixing bowl, add the extra teaspoon of caster sugar and then carefully dissolve the fresh yeast into the water. Be careful not to stir the yeast too vigorously or it might get upset!

Once tiny bubbles start to appear on the surface of the water (that’s how you know the yeast is working), pour in about a third of the flour, followed by the two eggs, the rest of the caster sugar, the salt and the oil.

Now for the fun bit! Get your hands into the dough and combine the mixture, adding flour little by little as you go, until you get a big ball of dough. You will know when the dough is ready to knead because it shouldn’t stick to your hands any more. You will likely need the rest of the flour to get to this point, but just use what your own dough mixture needs.

Then sprinkle a clean work surface with flour and plop the ball of dough down onto it ready for a good knead. Slap, bang, wallop and knead the dough about for 5-10 minutes, adding a bit of flour if it gets too sticky again.

Drizzle a little bit of leftover sunflower oil around the big mixing bowl, place the ball of kneaded dough back inside and cover with cling film. Leave the dough to rise for about an hour and a half or until it has doubled in size.

Once the dough has risen, give it a little punch to knock the air back out of it. Place it back on the floured work surface and knead it a little bit, with a bit of flour if needed, so that it’s ready to shape.

 

 

As you can see from the photos, we made our Purim Challah Crown using lots of long three-strand plaits which we wound together on our baking paper to make a crown shape. We think the best way to make long strips of challah to plait together is to roll the dough out with a rolling pin to make long and thin flat dough.

 

 

Roll out the dough so it’s long and flat and then cut strips with a sharp knife (children should always ask an adult for help). We made one long, fat plait for the bottom of the crown which would be placed on the Queen’s head and then five long, thinner plaits which we looped and attached to the bottom plait to make the crown shape.

 

 

Once you are happy with the shape, cover it with a clean tea towel or cling film and let it rise again for half an hour to one hour. Towards the end of this time, pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees and prepare the egg wash. In the Challah Mummy Kitchen, we prefer using the egg white, instead of the egg yolk, for our egg wash because it makes a slightly lighter brown colour on the outside of the baked challah. Spread the egg wash generously over the challah with a pastry brush if you have one, or the back of a teaspoon if you don’t. Bake the challah for 20-30 minutes. You may need to cover the challah in foil at around 20 minutes if you feel it is getting a bit too brown and crispy!

 

Once the challah has cooled (on a wire cooling rack if you have one) then you can enjoy decorating it! We used multicoloured sprinkles, edible gold dust and edible pearls but you can use whatever you and your children or grandchildren like! Just have fun and enjoy the smiles on their faces when you present their stunning Purim Crown Challah to your family on Purim! Chag sameach!

About the Challah Mummy

My name is the Challah Mummy! Each week in the Challah Mummy Kitchen, my two children suggest a new, fun shape and we make it out of challah. We have made fire engine challah, red London bus challah, green turtle challah, blossom tree challah and even helicopter challah. Check out all of our unusual and interesting designs at #ChallahMummy on Instagram, challahmummy.wordpress.com or the Challah Mummy Facebook Page. We would also love to hear your suggestions for fabulous challah shapes so please get in touch at challahmummy@gmail.com.