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Say Hello to Challah: How To Make Healthy French Toast Out of This Traditional Jewish Bread

Sara Tane

In the spirit of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year that falls around late September or early October, it's only right that you kick off your new beginning with a hearty slice of French toast. Challah, a traditional Jewish egg bread, is slightly sweet and extra fluffy, so it's best eaten fresh. However, if you've got a day-old loaf, slicing it up for a couple batches of French toast is the perfect solution. Topped with a seasonal apple compote dripping in creamy honey, this is the best way to bring in the New Year.

Tom-AY-to, tom-AH-to, po-TAY-to, po-TAH-to, right? There are some words that have multiple accepted pronunciations. However, I am here to tell you that "challah" is not one of those words.

If you are pronouncing a hard "ch" like "cheese," then this is for you. The correct sound is actually a Hebrew letter that does not exist in English, so the Americanized pronunciation sounds like "halla." I understand that it's just a loaf of bread, so it's not a huge deal. But if you go to a bakery and they smirk at you when you ask for "CHallah," don't say I didn't tell you so.

Sara Tane

All linguistics aside, a slice of challah bread, in my personal opinion, is the superior option for any French toast endeavor. Although challah is best enjoyed the day that it's made, if you have some leftover, it has the perfect consistency and density to be doused in an egg wash and topped with fresh fruit for breakfast.

View Recipe: Challah French Toast with Honey-Apple-Ginger Compote

Because it's Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, there is plenty of challah to be had. Traditionally, Jews celebrate Rosh Hashanah by eating apples and honey to symbolize hopes for a "sweet" new year. In the spirit of fall, this challah French toast recipe is served with a fresh apple compote that blends cinnamon, ginger, and honey. Even if you're unfamiliar with Rosh Hashanah, head to your nearest bakery for a loaf of challah and grab some apples from your local farmers' market for a seasonal spin on a breakfast favorite.