We’re big cheese eaters in our house. I prefer milder cheeses, whereas the OH and N like extra strong cheddar, with a bit of stilton. I’m the soft cheese fan. You can’t beat a bit of brie with crackers. Jamie Oliver’s multiple cheese macaroni cheese is a favourite dish, along with cauliflower cheese. Sometimes I don’t want a full on lunch but want to treat myself a bit more. I’d been flicking through pinterest and spotted some baked camembert dishes. I knew I’d have to get some brie and try my own.
Now I do love baked camembert, and breadcrumbed mozzarella sticks are one of my treat foods. But I’m never going to eat a full round of camembert or brie so I just used a wedge of brie and cut off how much I wanted.
This works so much better if you have a box with a circle of brie in because it’s all contained and you can properly dip your savoury ingredients in to scoop out the delicious oozing cheese. But I worked with what I have. (I was aso really lazy and just shoved it in the microwave – because I didn’t want to spend 15 minutes waiting for the oven to preheat. It melts the brie fine but doesn’t keep it gooey for as long).
If you’re baking cheese properly, remove it from any plastic wrapper, replace the round of brie or camambert back in the wooden box (leaving the lid off). Put on a baking tray or on parchment paper, then bake at 180C / 160C fan. Heat until it’s gooey in the centre, and dippable. When ready to eat, cut a cross in the top of the brie rind to show the runny inside below, and get dipping to scoop up the tasty flavour. You can either sprinkle over the toppings or just have those on the side for people to add to their plates.
You can add anything to the brie. Crackers or lightly toasted bread goes really well, or even crudites or breadsticks. Top the baked brie with cranberries or redcurrants for a Christmassy hint, or go more sweet with apple slices and caramel drizzled over. Chopped nuts make a good addition by giving extra texture. Although it does get a bit messy.
It works great as a starter to a dinner party, or just a lazy tea of mix and match tapas style dishes where everyone can dip in.
I sliced up apples, chopped up some pecan nuts (although I wanted hazelnuts but couldn’t find any in the larder). Then drizzled over some maple syrup. It tasted so good, and still had plenty of brie left to have in a panini the next lunch time. I only used half a small wedge for the dish for myself.
Baked brie with apples, pecans and maple syrup
Serves 2-3 as a starter
Ready in 15 minutes
- Brie (or camembert) in a box
- 2 apples, sliced
- Handful pecan nuts, chopped
- 1 tbsp maple syrup to drizzle
How to make
Simply bake the cheese in the box (minus the plastic wrapper), in a preheated oven. It should take less than 10 minutes. The serve on a platter or shallow dish with the toppings scattered or drizzled over. Use the apples to dip or top everything on crackers or with crusty bread.
Do make sure you’re using good quality pure maple syrup for the best taste.
What would you top baked brie with?