Put flour, sugar, and salt into a bowl. Stir in the yeast.
Make a well in the middle and add the COLD water, eggs, and sunflower oil. Mix to a soft, but not sticky, dough.
Oil a large bowl. Knead the dough until firm and elastic.
Shape the dough to a round and put in the oiled bowl. Cover with cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours.
Put the dough on a lightly floured surface. Knock it back with your fists for 2-3 minutes until smooth and elastic. Divide the dough in two.
Oil a baking tray. Divide each piece of dough into 3 pieces and shape into a plait.
Place on the baking tray, cover with cling film, and leave to rise for 30 minutes or until doubled in size.
Brush the loaves with egg and sprinkle with poppy seeds (optional). Bake in a preheated oven at 230°C/Gas 8 for 10 minutes. Then reduce to 200°C/Gas 6. Bake for a further 20 minutes. The loaves should be well risen and they should be rich brown in colour.
The loaves should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. Cool on a wire rack
Please use cold water! Every recipe That I know uses tepid water, but cold water is way better!