This is an amazingly delicious Challah bread that is vegan and gluten-free. The egg flavor comes from the non GMO soy lecithin. Aquafaba makes it light and moist.
6 1/2 cups All Purpose Gluten-Free Flour (we use Bob’s Redmill)
2 teaspoons xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar (evaporated cane juice)
2 packages active dry yeast
3 Tablespoons ground flax seeds
3 Tablespoons soy lecithin (non GMO)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup Aquafaba (or water)
2 Tablespoons poppy seeds
warm water, separated: 1/3 cup plus 1/3 cup plus 3 1/4 cups
Preheat oven to 200oF.
Grease an 8 inch diameter, 3 inch deep cake pan. Wrap parchment paper around the cake pan in order to increase the length of the pan sidewalls. Secure by wrapping the circumference with staples or kitchen string.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, xanthan gum, and salt.
In a medium size bowl mix sugar with the yeast and pour in 1/3 cup of warm water. The water should be lukewarm, not hot, or the yeast won’t work. Beat the mixture with a fork and let sit for about 5 minutes. The top should foam. If it doesn’t the yeast is no good and the dough won’t rise.
In a large bowl beat flax seeds and lecithin with 1/3 cup water. Add the olive oil and Aquafaba (or 1/3 cup water) and beat until creamy. Add in the yeast mixture and 3 1/4 cups of warm water and mix well.
Stir the flax/yeast/water mixture into the flour and mix well making a very thick batter. Pour the batter into the greased cake pan. With oiled hands you may smooth the surface of the batter. Sprinkle the top with poppy seeds.
Place the pan on the top of the warm oven. I have a gas oven with the burners raised above the top surface of the oven so that the sheet is not directly touching the heat – it is just in a warm environment. If you have a flat surface cook top you many want to place the bread on a rack so it is not in direct contact with the heat. Allow the dough to rise and double in size, about 45-60 minutes.
Raise oven temperature to 400oF.
Bake for 10 minutes. Cover the top with more parchment paper or a pot cover and bake for an additional 30 minutes. When done, turn oven heat off and let bread sit in the hot oven for another 10 minutes. Remove and let cool.
Once cool, remove the paper and string and remove from pan.
Bread may be cut in wedges or slices.