31 January 2009

Chocolate-Brie-En-Croute with Walnuts

Some tastes just work together. Which ingredients should be paired with other ingredients is a matter of individual taste.

For me there are some basic rules for pairings in a recipe.
  • The flavors must have something in common.
  • The flavors must balance each other.
  • There must be a counterpoint, a foil.
Brie-en-croute is a favorite dessert we tried a few years back when my husband's incessant channel surfing stopped for five minutes while Emeril Lagassé was kicking it up a notch. Emeril's version, which paired walnuts with brie and brown sugar in a pastry shell, sounded tasty. I flew to the computer (this was long before we had a laptop and an iPad) to locate the site and print out the recipe.

Brie is creamy and earthy and comforting. Bland with a tang. To my palate, a creamy chocolate with a hint of salt seemed a good match for it. See what you think:

Chocolate-Brie-En-Croute with Walnuts
  • 1 package pre-made puff pastry or similar product, thawed
  • 1 8-ounce round of brie cheese
  • 1 large or 2-3 small pieces of high quality milk or dark chocolate
  • 1/4 cup coarsely-chopped walnuts
  • egg wash
  • flour for dusting work surface

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll out the pastry on a floured surface to form a round shape, about the size of a pie crust.

Place the round of brie in the middle of the circle. Press the chocolate down into the brie. Fold the puff pastry up so that it encloses the brie, smoothing down seams and trimming off excess dough. (Save the excess and use cookie cutters to create shapes for decoration.) Top with walnuts.

Place ball of filled dough on a parchment lined baking sheet. Coat with egg wash. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until pastry turns golden brown.

My pastry was too cake-y, not flaky enough. But the taste was heavenly. It would even better with homemade pastry dough.

My chocolate was from Jean-Paul Hevin.


15 comments:

Judy said...

I love Brie en croute and the addition of chocolate would make it even better. What a lovely recipe and post. Now that I am hungry I must go raid the frig.

ChazFrench said...

Oh my dear, you insane genius, you purveyor of food smut. You peddler of epicurean prostitution.

I do believe you're a madwoman.

THANK YOU!

;^)

Le laquet said...

I'm going to have to try that - brie and chocolate ... oh er?!?

Nigel Slater does a baked camembert in the box with garlic and white wine that is lovely ~ but savoury obviously. Yum!

Fiona said...

Every picture tells a story, that looks divine !

Penny said...

Your photography is beautiful! And the ingredients sublime.

Martha said...

I love brie en croute -- the addition of chocolate -- hmmm! I do have brie in the fridge and chocolate (good chocolate) in the pantry . . .and it is super bowl! Do I dare bring such a classy dish to the super bowl party?

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

Judy, I've made brie en crouté with dried cranberries, too. Hmm...cranberries AND chocolate.

Well, Chaz, not only do you have a way with words but you've discovered my secret! You are welcome.

Oh, LeLaquet, that sounds delightful!

Fiona, it would be great with honey, too!

Thanks, Penny! Can't you just taste that melting chocolate...

I'd bring bubbly, too, Martha!

Farmgirl Cyn said...

Geez Mimi, come on! You're killin' me here! In my mind, I can so taste this combo....Now I have to go and poke my mind's eye out! I am TRYING to cut back on the goodies!

Laura said...

Would never have thought of that but I'm itching to give it a try!

Christine said...

Mimi, I've done many savory brie en croute but never a sweet one. Mainly because I'm not overly fond of the cranberry iteration. But brie and chocolate, hmmm. This I'm gonna try. Maybe for Valentine's Day?

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

Well, Cyn, my plan, Yooper than I am, is tempt you trolls. LOL.

Laura, go ahead - try it!

Christine, I can just taste this paired with a red wine that has cherry layers...

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

I've made brie en croute, but never thought to add chocolate to it. I've tried it with nuts and dried cranberries, which is a lovely combination and adds the tang that balances the richness of the cheese.

Cora (Cora Cooks) said...

This sounds like a truly heavenly combination of two great flavors. My niece - a devoted cheese and chocolate fan - will love it!

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

Lydia, I recall an article in Yankee Magazine a few yews back that suggested cranberries with brie - a really great idea!

Cora, it is so smooth, it reminds me of baby food - at least when it is warm.

Anonymous said...

Yum!
I sliced my Brie wheel in half, and spread a layer of some homemade fig & raspberry jam I had made, inside. Then on top of the brie placed 4 squares of Lindt 86% dark chocolate.
Oh my!