Showing posts with label double cream brie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label double cream brie. Show all posts

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Goblin Bites

Halloween used to be my favorite holiday . . . with Easter a close second.  As you might guess, my level of enthusiasm for a holiday was in direct proportion to the amount of chocolate involved.  I eagerly awaited Halloween night, crafting a clever costume, mapping out my strategy to collect the most candy in the least amount of time.

Once I hit my 30s, I found that people were less likely to give me candy when I knocked on their doors.  In addition, my metabolism slowed to the point that 4000 calories worth of candy was no longer a good idea.  Basically, the joy of trick-or-treating was gone.  Now, for me, the best part of Halloween is the glut of horror movies on TV during the month of October.

Halloween night itself is a waiting game:  me, in the living room, staring down a huge bowl of candy, waiting for the doorbell to ring.

My only salvation--what stands between me and a two pound bag of mini-Snickers--is having some enticing grown-up nibbles around.  They may not be healthy, per se, but they're better than a major chocolate binge.

Some of my favorite seasonal tidbits:  maple and ancho chili glazed pecans, sliced crisp apples drizzled with honey, spinach dip spiked with crunchy water chestnuts, and these little treats I have dubbed "goblin bites."  They offer a wonderful balance of spicy and sweet, crispy and creamy, all in one perfect mouthful.

(Don't be alarmed the idea of jalepeno jelly.  Just look for a "mild" variety.  The number one ingredient is apple juice . . . there's plenty of sweet to cut the heat.)

Goblin Bites

15 mini filo shells (in your grocery's freezer case)
1/4 pound of brie, rind removed
jar of mild jalepeno jelly

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.

Cut the brie into 15 pieces.  Lay the filo cups out on the baking sheet.  Fill each with a piece of brie and 1/2 a tsp. of the jalepeno jelly.  Bake for 8 minutes.  Allow to cool a minute or two before serving.

(Note that this recipe can be doubled, tripled, quadrupled . . . it makes a great part of a holiday spread.)

Monday, June 14, 2010

To Brie or Not to Brie

I wasn't sure about Brie. Over the years, all the Brie I'd had was tough-rinded or too runny. Until I started researching cheeses for The Long Quiche Goodbye, I didn't know cheese could be too young or too old. It was in the store. I bought it. I tasted it. I decided.

Well, guess what? Cheese can be too young and/or too old and it doesn't taste as good. {For years, I thought Brie tasted like cardboard.}

So I decided I really wanted to give Brie another chance. It is, after all, the "king of cheeses." It won a contest in 1814. Check out my June 15 newsletter for more info on that.

So, my taste! I bought a Supreme Brie, which is a double cream cheese. Double...creamy. Delicious. I let the Brie get to room temperature (which takes about an hour) and then I made a yummy chutney--inspired by one of my favorite sauces to drizzle on cheese--Pickapeppa. [It's not exactly the same. I didn't steal the recipe. But it tasted GOOD! You'll need a spoon to scoop it onto a cracker or bread. Then top it off with the cheese.]

By the way, according to Culture Magazine -- which I LOVE!!!!! -- here's the scoop on knowing how ripe is too ripe for bloomy and washed-rind cheeses. [I hope Culture won't mind that I copied and pasted, but it's such a well written piece! Click the magazine's link to learn more.]

"Knowing what to look for when selecting cheese will help you pick out that perfectly ripe piece. When examining bloomy and washed-rind cheeses, look at the cream line. This translucent layer just below the rind signals where the bacteria on the surface have begun to break down the proteins in the paste—from the outside toward the center. This layer is softer and usually more assertive than the middle and adds a welcome variation in flavor and texture from the rind and center paste. But here’s the important thing: the wider the cream line, the riper the cheese. Left to age, the cream line would overtake the smooth, compact interior, leaving a core that is more liquid than paste." [Cheesemonger, Nathan Raskopf]

I strive to know more about cheese. I hope you will, too!


Mango Chutney and Brie


½ yellow onion, chopped fine

1 Tablespoon oil

1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 Tablespoon brown sugar

½ teaspoon thyme

½ teaspoon cloves

2 slices mango, chopped

½ tomato chopped fine

1 Tablespoon fresh basil, chopped

4 ounce wedge of Triple Cream Brie * brought to room temperature

8-10 crackers or crisp bread


Cook chopped onion in oil until wilted. Add brown sugar, vinegar, thyme, cloves. Cook one minute. Remove from heat. Toss in mango, basil and tomatoes and toss until combined.

Set on a plate.

Adorn wth a wedge of brie and crackers or slices of crisp bread.

Use a spoon to put chutney on crackers. Add slice of cheese. Yum!

And now for other news...

"You Be The Sleuth" Contest!

My first book in A Cheese Shop Mystery series, The Long Quiche Goodbye, debuts July 6. [Three weeks. Just three weeks. I'm so excited... can you see me doing the Snoopy dance?]

To celebrate its release, I'm running a contest from June 9 to July 6! You be the sleuth! Track down the recipe on my website that includes eggs, Edam, and white pepper. Enter your answer by clicking on this link: CONTEST ENTRY FORM.

One of you will win a $25 gift certificate at your favorite bookstore. Two of you will win signed copies of The Long Quiche Goodbye. Three of you will win a Long Quiche Goodbye magnet. You can ask friends for help. Spread the word and share the fun. And while you're there, consider pre-ordering a book on My booksellers page.

Here is the link to my website to help get you started. Have fun.

[Note: you might wonder about all the contests. Why, why, why? Well, a lot of publishing is about buzz. Those pre-order and first week sales matter to the publisher. They decide whether the series is a hit or not based on those numbers. So we run contests to help our fans spread the word. Tell a friend.]

Oh, and check back on the launch date, July 6. I'm having a Long Quiche Goodbye VIRTUAL PARTY. It'll be fun!