You might remember an old
song, which tells us “Nothing
Could Be Finer than to
Be in Carolina in the Morning...”
I’ve decided I’m going to dispute
that idea, because that’s not necessarily
true! Lately, I’ve been fixated
on different types of bread, and for
me, “Nothing Could Be Finer than
to Smell Delicious Bread Being
Baked in the Morning..,” challah
in particular. I now know you
well enough to share another deep
secret. In the past I told you about
my “addiction” to potato chips.
Well, this is another one. Suddenly,
I can’t stop talking or dreaming
about challahs. While you may
be counting sheep to fall asleep, I
count challahs. I would give up the
best cake (except cheese cake) for a
slice of fresh challah.
Friday night challah and holiday
challah might have been standard
for many of us growing up. Where
in the past it was baked for those
special occasions, it is now becoming
an ordinary year-round offering.
Why not? The taste of really good
challah is heavenly, as people have
now discovered, and is becoming
as popular as bagels. Traditionally,
it was either round or braided, with
or without raisins. Today, all tastes
and various cultures are being used
in making challah. Actually, there
must be at least twenty different
ways challah is now being baked.
For example, there are customary
Japanese and Italian ingredients
being incorporated into the flavoring
Brooklyn has a Japanese challah
bakery in one of its restaurants—
Shalom Japan. I love Japanese
food. Leave it to Brooklyn to have
something like that. I think I saw
another bakery being advertised as
a “Challahria” or is that the name of
Alec Baldwin’s wife? I’m not sure.
I don’t even know how to get to
Brooklyn. Does that mean I have
to go out and buy a GPS? Wait!
Don’t they come built into cars?
Does that mean I have to get a new
car? Oops! I think that big thing
on my dashboard might be a GPS.
It takes me forever to learn how to
use all the contraptions in my car.
Is ten years too long? Do I now
have to take GPS lessons?
It’s unfair I have to spend so
much time and effort to get to
Brooklyn for a good challah. Oy
vey! Is there anyone who knows
where I could buy a good challah
Challahs are now topped with
sprinkles like donuts—“Dunkin
Challahs” anyone? Hybrid pumpernickel
rye challah now comes
stuffed with pastrami. I must call
Ben’s Deli and see if they have that.
There’s a list of things you could
potentially do with challah. I’d like
a “Challah of the Month Club.” In
January, a cherry challah in honor
of George Washington’s birthday or
maybe apple pie “Challah Mode.”
How about cheesecake challah for
Shavuot? Blueberries and strawberries
mixed with plain challah for the
Fourth of July sounds appetizing.
In the fall when it starts to get
nippy how about peppermint, hot
chocolate challah? Pumpkin and
cinnamon challah rolls would be
great for Thanksgiving. My favorite,
aside from the cheesecake
challah, might be the brisket and
latke stuffed challah for Chanukah.
For people who are into healthier
food, how about parsnip, cherry
and walnut coffee cake challah with
The kids might like peanut butter,
chocolate chip challah with crumbs
on top. It could make a great dessert
because many people might like to
have coffee cake challah or double
chocolate chip with a nice cup of
coffee. Let me tell you these are not
fictitious ingredients I’m talking
about. I’ve seen the recipes. They
are all too real. Eating too much
might not be healthy for any of us.
I’m not endorsing this as a steady
diet, but once in a while, eh? What
a way to live!
Challah can be used in a number
of ways even when it gets too stale
to eat. I think it could be a handy
step stool. How about a hard hat?
You never know when you’ll need
one. You can tailor it to fit any size
by scooping out the middle. If you
like to exercise, you can turn it
upside down and use it as a balance
board or add a handle and it can
be made into a kettlebell. If all else
doesn’t fit your lifestyle, you could
use it as a doorstop. It’ll hold the
door open while you shlep in more
bags of fresh challah.
HAPPY CHALLAH DAYS
16 NORTH SHORE TOWERS COURIER ¢ February 2019