1. Set aside 1 egg for glaze and raisins, if using. Using remaining ingredients above, prepare Basic Challah Dough, Prepared By Mixer.
2. If you’re adding raisins, rinse, drain, and dry them on paper towels. Oil a baking sheet.
3. Knead dough lightly on a floured work surface. Pat dough into about a 9-inch square on work surface. Sprinkle evenly with raisins, if using, and pat them into dough. Roll dough up tightly from one end to the other, lightly flouring work surface if dough begins to stick.
4. Roll dough back and forth on work surface, pressing with your palms, to form a smooth rope about 28 inches long. Wind rope around one of its ends in a spiral. Tuck other end underneath and pinch firmly to attach it to dough. Press whole loaf firmly with your hands to give it an even round shape. Carefully set loaf on oiled baking sheet.
5. Cover shaped loaf with a warm, slightly damp towel. Let rise about 1 hour or until nearly doubled. Preheat oven to 375°F.
6. Beat remaining egg with a pinch of salt. Brush risen loaf gently with egg. Bake 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F. Bake about 30 more minutes or until top and bottom of bread are firm and bread sounds hollow when tapped on bottom.
7. Carefully transfer bread to rack and cool.