Challah is separated from dough made of at least one of the following grains; wheat, barley, rye, oat or spelt.
The majority of the liquid content of the dough must be water in order to be able to make a blessing over the process of taking Challah. In the case of dough that is made up of liquids that are mostly not water such as fruit juices, honey and egg, then Challah must still be separated but without the recitation of the blessing. Even so, at least a drop of water should be added to the dough.
In the case of loose batters such as those of sweet cookies or cakes, Challah is not separated. In the case of a heavy batter/ dough, such as that of a babka, Challah is separated.
The dough must contain at least 59 ounces of flour in order to be able to take Challah and recite the blessing. If the amount of flour in the dough is between 43 and 59 ounces, Challah is separated without a blessing. Dough that contains less than 43 ounces of flour does not have Challah separated from it.
How to take Challah
Challah is taken after the flour and water are well mixed together, while the dough is still whole before it’s divided up and shaped into loaves.
Dough that has been kneaded in several batches should be combined into a single bowl.
If all of the above requirements for the Challah are met the blessing over the commandment should be recited;
“Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu Melech HaOlam Asher Kidishanu B’Mitzvotav Vetzivanu L’hafrish Challah”
The blessing translates to mean;
“Blessed are You, L-rd our G-d, King of the Universe, Who has Sanctified us through His commandments and commanded us to separate Challah.”
After the recitation of the blessing, a small piece of dough (approximately one ounce) should be separated and one should say, “This is Challah”- or in Hebrew “Harei Zoh Challah.”
The Challah should be burnt by wrapping it in a piece of foil and placing it in the broiler. If one wants to burn it in the oven, one must make sure that there is no other food baking in the oven at the same time.
In the case of one who forgot to separate Challah before baking the bread, it should be separated from the baked goods before any of them are eaten.