Stick with me here… gummy bears are my favorite candy of all time. I spent many weeks thinking about how I could incorporate gummy bears into challah. I thought about melting them down and using that as the liquid in the dough, but that didn't seem like the best way to keep their gummy texture.
Ultimately, I landed on making a lemon challah dough and just kneading the gummy bears into the dough. I didn’t really have high hopes that this method would work, but as soon as the mini loaves came out of the oven I was so excited!
I brought a loaf to one of my friends who lives locally and didn’t tell her what was in the loaf, asking that after she tasted it she needed to tell me what she honestly thought. Her reaction was about the same as mine, it took a couple of bites to get over the weirdness of having gummy bears floating in the challah, but then the loaf was devoured!
I hope you enjoy this strange concoction of my favorite candy in challah form!
1 Tablespoon instant yeast
½ Cup sugar
1 large egg, beaten
1 Teaspoon kosher salt
¼ Cup butter (melted)
Zest of one lemon
1 Teaspoon lemon extract
1 Cup warm water
3-4 Cups flour
½ Cup gummy bears
Whisk egg, salt, melted butter, water, lemon zest, lemon extract, and yeast in a large bowl.
Add the flour one cup at a time to yeast mixture. Using a strong spatula to mix at the beginning and using your hands to mix once it gets too difficult with the spatula.
Once the dough is fully mixed, turn onto a floured surface and knead for 8 minutes. For the final two minutes, knead in the ½ cup of gummy bears. (If you don’t knead the dough well enough, the challah will not hold its shape when it is braided.)
Grease a large bowl with spray oil and transfer the dough to the bowl. Cover with a damp paper towel and put in the oven to proof. (Make sure the oven is off!) Proof until the dough is doubled in size about 45 minutes-1 hour.
Once proofed, turn the dough onto a floured surface and cut into 4 equal portions. Take one of the 4 portions and cut into three pieces. Braid as you normally would for a 3 strand challah. Complete for the other portions of dough.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. While the oven is heating beat one egg with a splash of water to create an egg wash. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash over the top of the loaves. Bake the loaves for 20 minutes.
NOTES: Make sure these loaves are completely cooled before you eat them or the hot gummy bears will burn your mouth!