Apple Bread (Challah Bread Recipe)
Amazing Apple Bread, AKA Challah Bread Recipe – This moist, sweet, and yeasty bread is our favorite seasonal bread recipe with tender chunks of apple speckled throughout.
Challah Bread Recipe
Moist Yeasty Apple Challah Bread Recipe with tender spiced apple speckled throughout. A seasonal favorite I can never resist!
After moving to North Carolina we started visiting apple orchards every fall. The county just south of us actually has more apple orchards in it than any other county in the US, including Michigan and Washington.
At the orchard stores, I discovered apple bread. Not an apple bread that is heavy and dense like banana or pumpkin bread, but light yeasty apple bread with tender apple morsels suspended in its supple folds.
I contemplated this bread for some time before I decided to attempt to make my own version. What sort of dough could create such a unique and addictive bread? How could it be so light and still hold up the apple chunks?
After playing with several types of bread doughs, I decided on a challah recipe. By folding small spiced apple chunks into tender airy challah dough, the layers rise up into a pillowy loaf.
Drizzle apple cider glaze over the top of the Apple Challah Bread Recipe and you have a festive holiday bread perfect for any occasion!
How to Make This Apple Bread – Challah-Style!
For the Dough:
- All-Purpose Flour (Best to weigh out the flour to the right measurement)
- Ground Cinnamon
- Lukewarm Water
- Dry Active Yeast
- Vegetable Oil
- Large Eggs
- Vanilla Extract
- Orange Zest
For the Apple Filling:
- Large Peeled and Cored Apples
- Ground Cinnamon
- Dark Rum
For the Glaze:
- Apple Juice or Cider
- Powdered Sugar
Step by Step Instructions
- Mix the Ingredients – In a medium bowl, mix the flour, salt, and cinnamon and put to the side. In your stand mixer bowl, mix together the warm water with honey and yeast and allow it to foam for 10 minutes. Then add in the flour mixture and the rest of the ingredients for the dough.
- Knead the Dough – Using the bread hook on the stand mixer, knead the dough until it becomes soft, smooth, and elastic. This should take 8 to 10 minutes.
- Let it Rest – Place the smooth dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover it tightly. Let it rise until it doubles in size, which can take up to 2 hours.
- Prep the Dish – Lightly butter a 9 inch round or oval baking pan. A spring-loaded pan could work for this as well.
- Prep the Dough – Toss the apple slices in rum, cinnamon, and sugar. Then gently deflate the dough and transfer to a greased surface. Flatten it into a rectangle about 8 inches by 10 inches.
- Knead the dough – Spread half the dough to the center of the dough and then fold a side over to seal the apples in the dough and then spread the dough a little bit. Then add the rest of the apples on top and fold over the other half of the dough and seal the apples again.
- Cut the Dough – Cut the dough in halves until you have 16 pieces. (Yes, this will be very messy.) Lay the pieces in the pan in a single tight layer, adding in any loose apples in between pieces or simply on top.
- Let it Rise Again – Cover it loosely with a lightly greased piece of plastic wrap or a damp towel and let it rise for another 1 to 2 hours, until it’s about 3 inches in height. Preheat the oven towards the end of the rising.
- Bake the Bread – On the lowest shelf in the oven, bake for about 55 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Let it rest in the pan for 5 minutes when you take it out before you place it on a rack to finish cooling.
- Drizzle the Topping – Whisk the cider and powdered sugar together and drizzle it over the top of the bread and allow it to fall down the sides.
See The (Printable) Recipe Card Below For How To Make Apple Bread, Challah-Style. Enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is special about Challah?
It is a Kosher bread loaf that is typically a pale yellow color due to the number of eggs in the dough. Challah is soft and fluffy with a slightly sweet flavor.
Why does it take so long to rise?
The dough needs two separate times to rise before baking. This creates an ultra-soft and decadent texture. The temperature in your kitchen can determine how long it takes for the dough to rise.
How long does this recipe stay fresh?
Keep this bread tightly wrapped and stored at room temperature for up to 4 days. Or refrigerate for up to a week.
Other Great Bread Recipes
- Apple Beer Bread Recipe
- Crockpot Yeast Rolls Recipe with Apple Butter
- Best Simple Roti (Chapati Recipe)
- Award-Winning Oatmeal Banana Bread Recipe
- Cheesy Garlic Pull-Apart Bread Recipe
Apple Bread Recipe (Challah Style)
For the Dough:
For the Apple Filling:
For the Glaze:
- 2-3 tablespoons apple juice or cider
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- Mix the flour, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. In the bowl of your electric mixer, mix the warm water with the honey and yeast. Allow it to foam for 10 minutes. Then add the flour mix and the rest of the ingredients for the dough into the yeast mixture. Using a bread hook, knead the dough on low in the mixer, until you have a soft, smooth and elastic dough (about 8-10 minutes).
- Put the dough in an oiled bowl. Cover tightly and let it rise for 2 hours or until it's puffy and nearly doubled in size.
- Lightly butter a 9-inch round or oval baking pan that's at least 2 inches deep (or use a greased 9-inch springform pan.)
- Toss the apple chunks with the sugar, cinnamon and rum. Gently deflate the dough. Transfer it to a lightly greased work surface, and flatten it into a rough rectangle, about 8x10 inches.
- Spread half the apple chunks in the center of the dough. Fold a short edge of the dough over the apple in order to cover it, patting firmly to seal the apples and spread the dough a bit. Spread the remaining apple atop the folded dough. Cover the apples with the other side of the dough, again patting firmly (Basically, you've folded the dough like a letter, enclosing the apples inside.)
- Take a long knife and cut the apple-filled dough into 16 pieces. Cut it in half, then each half in halves, etc... This will be very, VERY messy. The dough is slippery, apples will fall out, sugar syrup will ooze. It's not pretty. Don't worry about making all the pieces the same size.
- Lay the dough chunks into the pan. Crowd them so that they all fit in a single tight layer. Lots of apple chunks will fall out during this process; just tuck them in among the dough pieces, or simply spread them on top.
- Cover the challah gently with lightly greased plastic wrap or a damp towel and let it rise for about 1-2 hours, until it's a generous 3 inches high (it should come above the rim of the pan). Twenty minutes before the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Place the bread in the lower third of the oven. Bake it for 55 minutes, or until the top is at least golden brown all over and has no white spots.
- Remove the challah from the oven, and after 5 minutes loosen the edges and carefully transfer it to a rack.
- Cool completely. Then whisk together the cider and powdered sugar and brush or drizzle it over the top, allowing it to drizzle down the sides.
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