Wrapping a brie or other runny cheese in puff pastry and baking it until the insides of the brie become slightly molten is not a new invention. But it’s still really, really good. En croute is the French term for anything wrapped in pastry. And the phrase “anything wrapped in pastry” is the American/English term for how to make people happy.
When I was growing up we had some family friends who we hung out with a lot—annual apple picking trips, holiday get-togethers, graduation parties and so forth. But there was the matter of the brie.
Can You Eat the Rind of Brie?
The husband and the children in the family were either under the impression that the soft, white, bloomy rind of the brie was not edible… or they just didn’t like it. But instead of doing what (now I am channeling my mother) “civilized” people would do—take a slice of brie, place it on your plate, and then cut off the rind, leave it to the side, and eat the creamy insides—they would take the serving knife and scoop out the creamy middle of the cheese, leaving behind an increasingly significant shell of rind for the rest of the crowd to enjoy.
My mother was having none of this, and at some point during the festivities she would swoop down upon the cheese platter and loudly say, “Who in the world did this to the brie?” She would then expound upon the edibility, nay, the desirability of the rind, to a deaf audience. And so it would go, over and over again.
One might wonder why she didn’t just stick to cheddar and alpine cheeses. But she was a classy woman, a Francophile no less, and damnit, there would be brie.
Maybe if she had taken another classic brie route, wrapping it in puff pastry, baking it until the insides were warm and runny, there wouldn’t have been the need for a rind détente after our gatherings. Don’t even get me started on the shrimp cocktail, and how many one should help oneself to, and how one should really know where to put the used tails.
Chill Baked Brie Before Baking
Chilling the brie before baking it ensures that the brie will not have liquefied by the time the puff pastry is puffed and browned—you want runny brie, not fast moving lava. Brie en croute should be baked at 375° or 400°F; it’s a little flexible, so if you have your oven set for one of those temperatures for another reason, you can get that brie right in there.
Even though this is wrapped in pastry, it still behooves you do serve with crackers, especially if it’s intended to be an hors d’oeuvres. It’s definitely a little carb on carb, but this isn’t exactly a reserved appetizer to begin with.
Making Brie En Croute Ahead of Time
You can wrap up the brie a day or even two ahead of time and store it in the fridge until it’s time to bake.
Reheating Leftover Brie En Croute
If you have leftovers, you can loosely wrap it in aluminum foil and reheat it in a 350°F oven for about 10 to 15 minutes until the brie is runny again and the puff pastry is hot.
Love Cheese? Try These Cheesy Recipes:
Baked Brie En Croute with Raspberry Jam
- 1 round brie about 12 ounces, chilled
- 1 sheet puff pastry
- ½ cup raspberry jam
- 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice the chilled brie in half horizontally and spread 1/4 cup of the raspberry jam over one of the cut side of the brie. Place the other half on top of the brie, so that the rind is on top.
- Roll the puff pastry so that it is 1/4-inch thick, or if it’s already that thickness, you are good to go. Place the jam filled brie in the middle of the puff pastry. Spread the rest of the jam on top of the brie. Fold the puff pastry up on over the top of the brie, pleating it as you go.
- Place the puff pastry dough on the baking sheet. Brush with the egg wash. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, let sit for 5 minutes, and serve hot.
Made this recipe? Post a photo of your delicious creation on Instagram with our hashtag #dinnersolved