Instructions

  1. Mix all of the dough ingredients, and mix and knead — by hand, stand mixer, or bread machine — to make a smooth, supple dough.
  2. Place the dough in a lightly greased, covered container, and allow it to rise for 60 to 90 minutes. It'll become quite puffy, though it may not double in bulk.
  3. Gently deflate the dough, and divide it into three pieces. Roll/stretch each piece into a 24" log.
  4. Brush the logs with the beaten egg white, coating them as well as you can.
  5. Sprinkle with the seeds. Roll them over, brush with egg white, and sprinkle on more seeds. Roll them around a bit, to coat as completely as possible.
  6. Allow the logs to rest for 15 minutes, uncovered.
  7. Squeeze the three logs together at one end. Braid into a braid. When you get to the end, squeeze the three pieces together and tuck them underneath. Transfer the braid to a lightly greased or parchment-lined pan, brush with more egg white, and and sprinkle with any leftover seeds.
  8. Cover the braid, and let it rise for 1 hour, until the braid has become noticeably puffy. Toward the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 425°F.
  9. Bake the bread for 15 minutes. Tent it lightly with foil (to prevent over-browning), reduce the oven temperature to 350°F, and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, until the crust is golden and the braid's internal temperature registers 190°F. Remove it from the oven, and cool on a rack.

Tips from our Bakers

  • For an intricate-looking round braid, simply coil your three-strand braid in on itself. Bake in a bread baking set at 425°F for 30 minutes with the cover on, and another 5 minutes or so uncovered (or as instructed above on a baking sheet) until the crust is golden and the braid's internal temperature registers 190°F on a digital thermometer.