Saturday, 22 November 2008

Back on Track

Canals, boats, bicycles, beautiful buildings, nice people... Add some rain, hale and stormy wind and you will have quite a well rounded picture of my five fabulous days in Amsterdam! :) Getting there was easy, getting away a bit more difficult, as due to bad weather air traffic was badly deleyed. I should have been back home before midnight, but at that time I was still waiting for my plane to take off from Schiphol... In the end I reached home at 4 am. after a peaceful and uneventful flight.

It was my first time in Amsterdam. A friend said to me before my trip: "You are going to love the city!" and he was right. :) This time I was there on business, but I will definitely go back for a holiday, hopefully in the not too distant future. I took quite a bunch of photos and will post some of them and more about my time in Amsterdam later, but I guess I owe you all a recipe after having had such a long hiatus from blogging. This one I found in a lovely little book called "New Flavours of the Jewish Table" by Denise Phillips:

Challah bread

Makes 2

600 g flour
1 tablespoon dry yeast
2 teaspoons salt
1 egg
1 tablespoon honey
25 g raisins
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 apple, cut into small pieces
100 g vegetable oil
150 g warm water
olive oil for brushing
1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
honey & cinnamon

1. Mix flour, yeast, salt, egg, 1 tablespoons honey, raisins and 2 teaspoons cinnamon in a large bowl.
2. Puré the apple using a mixer and add together with vegetable oil and warm water into the same bowl with the flour mixture.
3. Mix for a couple of minutes (if using a mixer or for about 10 minutes if you are doing the mixing by hand) until the batter is smooth and does not stick into to bowl anymore.
4. Remove the batter from the bowl. Brush the insides of the bowl with some olive oil.
5. Knead the batter lightly with your hands, then replace into the bowl, so that it gets a light olive oli coating.
6. Cover the bowl with cling-film and let the batter rise for ca. 30 minutes or until it has doubled in size.
7. Meanwhile warm the oven to 200 Centigrade and cover a baking sheet with baking paper.
8. Divide the batter into two and knead both parts into long logs. Fold each log from the middle and then twist them into a spiral shape. Brush both breads with egg yolk and sprinkle with some sesame seeds on top.
9. Bake for 30 minutes in 200 Centigrade or until the breads are golden brown.
10. Brush the baked breads with some honey and sprinkle some cinnamon on top.
11. Serve warm, if possible.


Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

It is one of my favorite breads! As a matter of fact, I just made one today! Your loaves look good!



anya said...

Oh, I'm so sorry that the dutch weather 'held you captive' at the airport for so long. At least, you had you pucchini pralines with you. :) Did you try those yet, by the way?

This challah looks just as I imagined!

Cinnamonda said...

Thanks Rosa and Anya! Actually the Dutch weather was nothing compared to what we have in Helsinki just now!! A proper snow storm, but chocolate does help, indeed! :)


jesse said...

Wow, both the bread and the city look beautiful! I love your blog!

Cinnamonda said...

Hi Jesse! Thanks for your kind words!