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Purim for Beginners - Chocolate Mint Challah for Purim


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Learning about your heritage is important. It provides you with the history of your family and it explains why your family has the traditions that it does. One way to learn about your heritage is to examine the holidays that you celebrate. If you are Jewish, then March is the month that you will most likely celebrate Purim. Purim is a fun holiday because its goal is to encourage the Jewish people to “eat, drink and be merry. "

History of Purim

Like many other Jewish holidays, Purim is a celebration of a triumph the Jewish people made over tyranny and persecution. In the Biblical Book of Esther, the story of Purim is told. Haman had decided to exterminate the Jews in Persia and he held a lottery to determine what day he would start the massacre. The lottery established the 13th day of Adar as the day and the massacre was initiated. However, the Jewish people rebelled, fought fiercely and won. On the 14th day of Adar they celebrated their victory, and this is the celebration that is known as Purim.

The Celebration of Purim

Purim is a great holiday to celebrate. It is still celebrated on the 14th day of Adar, which usually falls sometime in March. In leap years, like 2008, there are technically two months of Adar. Purim, will therefore be celebrated in the second of the Adar months, and scheduled so that it is exactly one month before the next Jewish holiday, Passover.

The celebration of Purim is joyous. It involves family gatherings, great food and drink and great fun. This celebration also involves shalach manos, which is the practice of giving food and gifts to the poor and needy.

Enjoy my favorite Challah recipe this Purim. . .

Chocolate-Mint Purim Challah


  • 1 cup of warm water

  • 1 ½ tbsp yeast

  • 4 cups of flour

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder

  • 1/2 cup margarine or butter

  • 3 eggs

  • 12 oz. mint chocolate chips
  • Directions

  • 1. Bloom your yeast in the warm water. Then pour into a mixing bowl.

  • 2. Stir in 2 cups of flour and ¼ cup of sugar into the yeast. Allow this mixture to rise for about an hour.

  • 3. In a second bowl mix remaining flour, salt, sugar and cocoa powder together. Then cut in your room temperature margarine. Combine until the mixture is mealy.

  • 4. When the yeast mixture has set for an hour you can stir in 2 beaten eggs, the mint chocolate chips and the other flour mixture. Mix until a dough forms. Then knead until the mixture becomes elastic. Spray with a cooking spray, cover with a towel or cheese cloth and set in a warm area to allow it to rise for about an hour.

  • 5. Punch down dough and allow it to rise for another hour. Repeat.

  • 6. I like to knead the dough in the bowl to cut down on the mess I make, but you can knead on a floured surface as well.

  • 7. Divide your dough into two loaves. Then divide each loaf into three to four strands. Braid each loaf and place it on a cookie sheet that has been liberally sprayed with cooking spray. Allow to rise for another two hours.

  • 8. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush each loaf with an egg wash and bake for 45 minute. Take out of the oven and allow the loaves to cool.
  • One of the advantages of being Jewish is all the great recipes . From traditional Jewish recipes to trendy low fat recipes, this culture has great food


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