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Davis, California

Friday, May 24, 2024

Baking a difference

UC Davis students looking for a home-cooked snack at the end of the week are in luck.

Rain or shine, the Challah for Hunger Club at UC Davis sells challah bread on Fridays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the quad by the Memorial Union. Plain challah sells for $4 and various flavors of challah for $5.

All the proceeds go to charity – half to the Yolo County Food Bank and the other half to the American Jewish World Services’ Sudan Relief and Advocacy Fund.

Although the national organization has over 30 chapters nationwide, including UCLA, UC Berkeley and Yale, the Davis chapter was started this year by Rachel Sabes, a junior communication major who found the group on the Challah for Hunger national website. Chapters this fall have sold 2,905 challahs and donated over $11,000.

Hannah Goldner, a sophomore human development major and club board member, said the group wanted to help both local and national charities.

“All the charters donate to the Darfur fund, but we voted and chose the Yolo Food Bank. I like that it’s local, cool and tangible; we can see where the money’s going,” Goldner said.

Rachel Posalski, a senior psychology major and customer, also feels better about buying from a charity organization that helps with hunger and disaster relief.

“I feel really good about the charities. I’m glad they’re donating to something local and to something global,” Posalski said.

The club bakes all the bread at the Hillel House of UC Davis and Sacramento on A Street from noon to 5 p.m. on Thursdays. Members take all the challahs out to the quad on Fridays to sell them. Goldner believes the challah is a good value because of the quality.

“It’s definitely worth the price because it’s going to charity and the challah is handmade and fresh,” Goldner said.

The club makes the dough with flour, oil, sugar and salt. After putting in yeast, the members let the bread rise until the proper size. Later, they separate the dough into equal pieces, stretch and knead the dough, add the flavoring, twist and bake. Goldner notices a slight change from other challah recipes.

“It’s a little different because we don’t use the eggs like in traditional challah, but it’s still really good,” Goldner said

The flavored challah varies every week. They have had cinnamon sugar, chocolate, nutella and cinnamon sugar with pumpkin.

Posalski, who has had other types of challah, appreciates the taste and flavor variety of the challah sold.

“It tastes really good and you don’t find all these flavors all the time, especially the pumpkin,” Posalski said.

The Davis chapter of Challah for Hunger also participates in other bonding activities such as bowling.

“We’re planning on doing other activities but we just started. We’re mainly working on advocacy and advertising now,” said Sari Haskell, president of Challah for Hunger and senior communication major.

Club members want to expand both active membership and university-wide awareness so Haskell encourages students to join in and volunteer with the group.

“We have 20 active members but we are always looking to add new members,” Haskell said.

Challah for Hunger is not a religious organization and anyone can volunteer to bake or sell. UC Davis students interested in joining the club can e-mail Hannah Goldner at hannahgoldner@gmail.com, stop by the Hillel House or visit the club while selling on the quad for more information.

GRACE BENEFIELD can be reached at features@theaggie.org.


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