One of the new items on my Sukkot menu are “french bread bowls”. Unlike challah, kugels, and even baklavah, this is an item that you don’t find in other neighborhood bakeries, so I thought I would take a break from holiday preparations and describe them if you haven’t had the pleasure of digging into one before.
Imagine it’s Sukkot (that shouldn’t be difficult, it’s right around the corner!). You are sitting in your sukkah and the meal is about to begin. Being in Cleveland, it’s probably a little chilly, and then an amazing hot bowl of soup appears in front of you. Of course, the best thing about the soup (besides the soup itself, of course) is dipping some challah into it to get all those flavors together. The rest of your guests around the table have the same idea, and before you know it, all the challah is gone.
Bread bowls fix that problem because… wait for it… the bowl is made of bread! I KNOW, RIGHT? The hard outer crust of the french bread keeps the soup from seeping out, while the inner part of the bread is just the right texture and flavor to enhance any soup, from a traditional chicken broth with noodles to a thick pumpkin squash and even beef barley.
Now, a few notes about how I’m doing them for the chagim: Normally all my breads are made fresh the day before you come to pick them up, and that it of course 100% true for all my challahs. But because of the multi-day chagim I’ll be baking bread bowls this coming week and then immediately freezing them so that they are the freshest they can be when you are ready to use them, whether that’s on the first days of Sukkot, during Hol Hamoed, or for the last days. So all you’ll need to do is pull them from the freezer, let them defrost, cut the tops off, add your soup, and serve!
(Pro Tip: It’s also a great way to serve cholent!)