LOS ANGELES, December 30, 2013, Whether you are home or going to a New Year’s Eve party, baked brie is a decadent way to start off any meal.
Baked brie is the first appetizer to be cut, the first appetizer to be eaten completely and the first recipe everyone asks for. The simplicity of baked brie recipes make it perfect for any level of home chef.
Brie is a soft cheese made up of about 20-26 percent of fat. It has a smooth and soft mold around the exterior of the creamy interior. Both the interior and exterior of the cheese are edible but, if the taste is too strong, you can always remove it.
Brie can be purchased in wedges or as a round and, if you are interested in baking Brie, always buy the round. The firm cheese becomes gooey and loses its form as it warms up.
Bries and other soft cheeses lose their delicate flavor in hot temperatures. So, when you’re choosing a perfect recipe, choose one that doesn’t require a lot of cooking time for the best results.
Bries can be served with a variety of breads, crackers and fruits. A few favorites are apple slices, crostinis, brioche, french bread, fruit and nut crackers and black pepper crackers.
So, if you’re in the group that has never made baked Brie or you’re one who makes them all the time and need some new ideas, look no further.
Baked brie with orange fig jam
1 medium wheel of brie
2 ½ tablespoons orange fig jam
¼ cup of walnuts
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
a pinch of salt
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl add walnuts, olive oil and salt. Toss the walnuts until they are lightly covered with olive oil. Place them on a light cookie sheet and bake them for 5 to 10 minutes moving them around every few minutes to keep them from burning. Remove them and let them cool. Next preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Then take your wheel of brie and score the top (cut three vertical lines and three horizontal lines but only make them deep enough to cut through the rind). Add the orange fig jam and spread it over the top and make sure to not go all the way to the edge. Then place the brie onto a nonstick cookie sheet. Bake the brie for 20 minutes and cook it a bit before your guests show up so it has time to cool slightly. Serve with desired crackers and bring in the New Year.
One more thought f you don’t bake your brie: Brie continues to ripen until it’s cut and once it’s cut it should be eaten within three of four days. After it has been cut wrap it in parchment paper and whether you have cut it or not always store it in the refrigerator. However take the brie out of the refrigerator five or ten minutes before you are ready to eat it.
Baked Brie with caramelized onions
½ yellow onion
1 round of Brie
1/2-tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper
Remove the stem and peel from the onion, then slice the onion in half. Cut the onion into ¼” strips. In a sauté pan heat the olive oil and add the cut onion. Next, turn the fire to a medium low, season with salt and pepper and cook the onions until they’re golden brown. This could take up to half an hour (this can be done a day ahead of time). While the onions are cooking, preheat the oven to 325. Place the Brie on a greased baking sheet and top it with the onions. Bake the Brie and onions for 10-12 minutes.
Baked Brie with brown sugar and almonds
½ cup lightly toasted almonds
¼ cup brown sugar
Place the Brie round on a greased baking sheet. Next, top the Brie with brown sugar and then almonds. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the Brie in the oven and bake for 12-14 minutes.
Baked Brie with raspberry jam and thyme
¼ cup Raspberry jam
2 sprigs of thyme
1 Brie round
Place the Brie round onto a greased baking sheet. In a small bowl, mix the thyme leaves and raspberry jam together. Next, top the Brie with the mixture. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the Brie in the oven and bake it for 10-12 minutes.
Baked Brie with caramel sauce and cherries
¼ cup caramel sauce
½ cup fresh cherries pitted and halved
1 Brie round
Place the Brie round onto a greased baking sheet. Next, preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the Brie in the oven and bake it for 10-12 minutes. While the Brie is hot, drizzle the caramel sauce over the top and add the fresh cherries.
For more great cooking tips, recipes and stories from
Chef Mary, visit her website at marypaynemoran.com
Follow Chef Mary on Twitter @chefmarymoran