I have always loved cheese. Admittedly, as a kid, I probably liked it too much. I remember going to Pizza Hut and I would always get a salad from the salad bar. How does that relate to cheese, you ask? Well, my Pizza Hut salad consisted of three small leaves of iceberg lettuce, alfalfa sprouts, and a pound of cheddar cheese. I love cheese.
These days, while my local Pizza Hut no longer has a salad bar and although my salads are substantially more green than cheddary, I still love cheese. And Brie Cheese is one of my all-time favorites.
I think I remember first discovering Brie cheese on a sandwich. I didn’t know what it was. They said it was a mild cheese, so I said, “Yes! Please!” And I’m glad I did. There is a taste…a consistency…a creaminess that elevates this cheese to the King of Cheeses in my opinion.
That’s why I love this recipe so much. It’s a comfort food and a great one for the holidays. The rich golden brown outer shell, the white creamy cheese with pecans and little red and green goodies inside just makes it feel like the perfect holiday companion.
And it’s portable! What do I mean?
Well, when you cook Brie, it is a super melty cheese so if you were to immediately cut into this puff pastry of delightfulness, all the cheese would just run out and you’d be left with an empty puff pastry shell. So some patience is required before cutting into it. But that actually makes it a great transportable party food because you can bake it right before you leave to go to your holiday parties and by the time you get there and plate it up with some crackers and maybe some grapes and nuts, it’ll be ready to go.
Or even if you’re hosting something at your own place, to be able to pull an appetizer out of the oven 40 minutes before it is ready to serve can actually help when trying to plan how you will use your limited oven space.
Besides its practicality and great taste, it’s pretty fun and easy to make. Start basic! You don’t need to make the fancy leaves at first if you don’t want to. But when you make it a second time (because once you’ve tried this you will make it a second time), perhaps experiment a bit more with the decorative elements.
As to what you can put in it, I think the pecans, rosemary and cherries work great. But experiment with that too. Dried cranberries would be nice. You could try Fresh Thyme instead of Rosemary. Really the possibilities are endless. And you can adjust the amount of honey you use to your liking. 1 Tablespoon is what I start with…but you can definitely add more if you like a little extra sweetness…and sometimes I do.
I can’t wait for you to try this and I hope this recipe comes in handy for one of your upcoming Holiday events. Let us know how it turned out and send some pix of how you ended up decorating yours.
Now, if we could just get the temperature below 75°F here is Los Angeles, I might actually feel like the holidays were upon us. But they are and that makes me happy!
Yield 1 appetizer
Few things render me speechless quite like a Baked Brie surrounded by a golden brown puff pastry. Call it my kryptonite if you will. It’s so good, it might just be yours too!
SO WHAT YOU'RE GONNA NEED IS:
- (1) Sheet Puff Pastry: Available Here
- (1) 8 ounce wheel of Brie: Available Here
- (1 - 2) Tablespoons Honey: Available Here
- (1/4) cup Pecans: Available Here
- (1/4) cup Dried Cherries: Available Here
- (1) twig Fresh Rosemary (about 2 inches): Available Here
- (1) egg: Available Here
- (1) teaspoon water: you can get it from your tap
YOU'LL ALSO NEED:
- Mixing Bowl: Available Here
- Rolling Pin: Available Here
- Baking Sheet: Available Here
- Silicone Baking Mat: Available Here
- Pastry Brush: Available Here
- Sharp Knife: Available Here
- Let Puff Pastry Sheet thaw according to package directions (usually about 40 minutes)
- Roughly chop Pecans, Fresh Rosemary Leaves (taken off stem) and Dried Cherries and place in a Mixing Bowl. Add 2 Tablespoons Honey to Chopped ingredients until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.
- Beat the Egg with Water in a separate small bowl to create Egg Wash. Set aside.
- Lay out Puff Pastry Sheet on the cutting board and, using a Rolling Pin, roll out to about 12 inches by 16 inches. Using knife, cut the puff pastry into a square (about 12 inches x 12 inches). Reserve extra Puff Pastry
- Place wheel of Brie Cheese in the middle of the Puff Pastry square.
- Top the Brie with the chopped ingredients.
- Starting at the corner of the Puff Pastry, bring puff pastry up and over the center of the Brie. Using the brush, paint the top of the folded portion of Puff Pastry lightly with the Egg Wash.
- Moving counter clockwise, bring the corner up and over the center of the Brie, overlapping the last fold. Paint each fold of Puff Pastry lightly with the Egg Wash. Continue until the Brie Cheese is completely covered. (You may need to trim the Puff Pastry a bit at the end if it becomes too much to neatly fold up and over the Brie). Transfer to Baking sheet.
- Paint the Puff Pastry lightly with Egg Wash until thoroughly coated. You do not want it to puddle up though.
- Using reserve Puff Pastry, cut little leaf decorations and a long strip that you can tie into a knot. Place on the top of the Brie in the center for decoration. Paint lightly with the Egg Wash.
- Bake at 400°F for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.
- Let cool for at least 30 minutes (45 minutes is best) before cutting into it…otherwise the cheese will just run out.