Baked brie en croûte, perhaps better referred to as a brie and onion cheese puff given my still somewhat questionable level of baking skill, has been on my “to make” list for over a year. I first saw the recipe prepared on an episode of Food Network’s 5 Ingredient Fix, and I have since seen it offered for sale in gourmet food catalogs.
Sadly, yet not all that unexpectedly, my brie and onion puff was not nearly as pretty as the one I saw on television or those advertised on glossy catalog pages. It was, however, delicious.
Still recovering from all of the sweets I ate over the holidays, I chose to make a savory puff with caramelized onions. A sweet puff option follows the same concept written in the recipe below but uses apples in place of onions. Rather than caramelizing two thinly sliced onions, simply sauté two thinly sliced apples in butter until the liquid in the fruit cooks down. Season the apples with cinnamon and sugar, apple pie spice, or whatever your tastebuds desire.
I placed my onions on the puff pastry and then topped the onions with the brie. It is also okay to halve the brie by cutting across the round horizontally and then layer the filling between the cheese halves.
I attempted to decorate my enclosed brie en croûte by placing a few pieces of extra puff pastry shaped with decorative cutters on its top. I have also seen brie en croûtes that encase the cheese in puff pastry, but instead of baking seam side down, pinch the open edges of the puff pastry towards the top, leaving a small space open. Maybe next time.
The descriptor that comes to mind when I think of the taste of brie cheese is the word pungent. If you are not a fan of brie for its pungent taste, you may like this dish as warm brie tastes much more creamy than pungent. You may want to have some additional brie-ready foods on hand should you make this dish. My baked brie en croûte was so cheesy that I ate some of the extra cheese with crostini.
While I am on the topic of brie, one of my favorite things to do with this cheese is to layer a few slices of brie and a few slices of granny smith apples on a baguette and top with cherry jam. If you get a chance to try this sandwich with any extra brie cheese you have on hand, I promise it is as delicious as brie en croûte. Enjoy!
Brie & Onion Puff
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 Vidalia onions, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 sheet puff pastry
- 1 round brie cheese
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the onions and saute until just brown, about 10 minutes.
- Add the water and continue to cook until dark brown, about 15 additional minutes.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
- Roll the puff pastry out to a 12-inch square.
- Place the cooled onions on the center of the sheet and top with the brie cheese round.
- Brush the edges of the puff pastry with the beaten egg, and then fold the puff pastry over the top of the round to seal the onions and cheese within the pastry. (Lightly pinch the seams together to ensure the edges are completely sealed.)
- Place the pastry, seam side down, on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Brush the top of the pastry with the remaining egg.
- Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
- Allow to cool for 15 to 20 minutes before serving.