Cinnamon Pecan Streusel Challah


Here’s a new twist (pardon the pun) on an old classic. Adding cinnamon and pecan to a basic challah recipe makes it good enough to eat for dessert.


½ cup canola oil
2 tsp salt
1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup boiled water cooled with ½ cup cold water
2 packets of rapid rise yeast dissolved in 1/3 cup warm water with ½ tsp sugar
3 eggs
7 cups bread flour


2 tbsp cinnamon
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup chopped pecans


1 beaten egg with 1 tsp water (for brushing before baking)


Combine oil, sugar, salt and and boiled water.

Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and add to oil mixture.

When yeast bubbles add the yeast mixture to the bowl and stir.

Add the 7 cups of flour one cup at a time mixing it completely after each addition. Mix with dough hook attachment (if you have one) for 5 minutes.

Remove the dough from the mixing bowl, it will be very sticky, and place on a floured surface. Knead the dough until smooth adding a little flour at a time if you need it. The dough is done when you rub your palm across the dough and it feels smooth.

Shape the dough into a ball and place in a large oiled bowl. Cover with plastic. Place in a warm area and let rise 1 hour.

Divide the dough into 2 balls. Divide each ball into 3 pieces. Roll the strands into the same length and then begin braiding adding the streusel mixture as you braid (you can even push the pecans into the dough to ensure they remain in place for the baking process).

Place on parchment lined cookie sheet and let rise 45 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350.

Brush the sides of the loaves with the beaten egg mixture. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until browned. 

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Gooey Cinnamon Squares

The title says it all...... the new family favorite. 

Soft Cookie Base

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • ¼ teaspoon table salt

  • ¾ cup sugar

  • 1 large egg

  • ¼ cup milk

Gooey Layer

  • ¼ cup light corn syrup, golden syrup, or honey

  • ¼ cup milk, half-and-half, or heavy cream

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

  • 12 tablespoons butter, at room temperature

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

  • ¼ teaspoon table salt

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 ¼ cups all purpose flour

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch cake pan with at least 2-inch sides with parchment paper and either butter the paper and sides of the pan or coat them with a nonstick spray. Set aside.

Prepare the cookie base: whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the 8 tablespoons butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and the milk, and beat until combined, scraping down bowl and then beating for 10 seconds more. Beat in dry ingredients until just combined.

Dollop cookie base over the bottom of the prepared pan and spread it into an even layer with a butter knife or offset spatula. Set pan aside.

Prepare the gooey layer: Whisk liquid sweetener, milk, and vanilla together in a small bowl and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, scrape down sides of bowl, and mix for 10 seconds more. Add 1/3 of flour and mix, then ½ of vanilla mixture and mix. Repeat again, twice, until all of the flour has been mixed until just combined. Dollop over the cookie base and spread carefully with an offset spatula or butter knife.

Make the topping: mix the sugar and cinnamon in a tiny dish and sprinkle it over the entire gooey layer. It will be thick but will come out of the oven almost like a crème brulee lid.

To bake and serve: Bake for 25 minutes until the cookies have bronzed on top. The gooey layer will rise and fall in the oven but will still be a bit liquidy under the cinnamon crust when the squares are done. Let cool completely on rack, then cut into 1-inch squares.