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How to Separate Challah

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Knead the dough

Knead the dough

Giora Shimoni
In ancient times, "challah" referred to the gift of bread that was given to the Jewish priest (Kohen) (Numbers 15:20). Today Jews bless, separate and discard a small piece of dough when making bread in remembrance of the portion once given to the Temple priests. This ritual reminds us that sustenance ultimately comes from God.

How To Separate Challah:
  1. When the dough is ready to be shaped into loaves, say the following blessing:
    Baruch Ata A-Do-Nay Elo-haynu Melech HaOlam Asher Kidishanu B'Mitzvotav V'Tziyvanu L'Hafrish Challah.
    (Blessed are You, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe, Who has sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us to separate Challah.)
  2. Immediately after saying the blessing, pinch off a piece of dough, approximately the size of half an egg, and say:
    harai zeh challah (this is challah).
  3. Discard the separated piece of dough by placing in a small bag and throwing into the trash.

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