Famously known as the “Queen of Cheese”, brie cheese is a type of pale white cheese that is soft and ripened with a soft rind around it. It originates from France and the name comes from the French region Brie. Brie cheese pairs well with apples and other salty food like ham. Due to its delicate and freshness you can have the cheese at room temperature with sandwiches or have it grilled. This type of cheese adds smoothness to any dish it is melted into. When it comes to melting, there a number of ways you can melt brie cheese. Some of the ways include the oven, microwave or over the stove.
The first thing you must do to ensure that you melt the cheese properly is to remove the top part of the rind because the rind doesn’t melt. Removing just the top rind will form a bowl shape that will help the cheese melt evenly without spilling out. If you want to serve the cheese in a bowl you can remove the entire hard rind of the wheel of brie and cut the brie cheese whilst it is cold, that way you can slice it nicely. You can let the brie cheese sit out at room temperature to prevent it from being exposed to heat for too long then you can melt the cheese in the oven, microwave or on the stove.
The Microwave Method Of Melting Brie Cheese
When using the microwave method, make sure that you put the brie cheese in a microwave safe plate. If you removed the top rind and left the bottom rind, you can put the cheese in a bowl. In the event that you removed the entire rind you should make sure that you use a reasonably small bowl to prevent spilling. You can line the cheese with a plastic wrap to easily remove the cheese once melted. Melting brie cheese can be a bit tricky so you may want to use low heat and let it sit in the microwave for short intervals in order to get the right consistency. Because every microwave is different heating times may vary but to get a smooth and creamy consistency you can microwave the cheese on medium to low heat for about 2 minutes. Continuously check the brie cheese and heat it up in short 15 second intervals until you get your desired results. If you want your cheese to become gooier you can let it sit for longer in the microwave. When ready you can enjoy your brie cheese as desired straight from the microwave.
The Oven Method
It is important to note that using the oven method can make your brie cheese elegant or it can create a hot mess if not done properly. You will need the wheel of brie cheese of course, a parchment paper that will help you transfer the melted cheese from the oven. Consider a baking sheet with sides to keep the oozing cheese in place when in the oven. It is always best to leave your brie cheese out on the counter at room temperature for about an hour before baking it in the oven. This way it can heat up or melt evenly. When melting your brie cheese in the oven preheat your oven before baking. Unwrap the cheese and put it on a parchment paper inside a baking sheet. You can then bake the cheese at about 350F or less for about 10 to 15 minutes based on the size of your cheese and how cold it is. You can remove the cheese from the oven and gently transfer it to a serving dish. You can have the brie cheese with crackers, slices of toasted bread or a dish of your choice.
The Stove Top Method Of Melting Brie Cheese
Melting brie cheese in a skillet is unconventional but effective. All you need to do is to cool your wheel of cheese over the counter like you would in the other methods. You can leave it to warm up to room temperature for about an hour or so. The next thing is to find a skillet that is similar in size to your brie wheel. This is because if the skillet is too big the cheese will spread out and brown. Thus the smaller the skillet the better. Once your brie is cool enough you can place it in your skillet at low to medium heat in order to prevent the cheese from burning whilst it warms up slowly and evenly. You can cover the skillet with a lid to effectively warm the cheese. You can even add your choice of toppings such as golden tomatoes, garlic with some oil to coat. When your brie has melted nicely, you can serve it with a dish of your choice.
How Brie Cheese Is Made
Brie Cheese is made from raw or pasteurised milk. In order to get the right consistency and the full flavour the cheese is left to tend to itself. Organic brie is often pasteurised but always check with the cheesemonger. Enzymes and rennet are also added to the milk so that it coagulates and curdles. The white rind is also left to ripen for texture and smoothness whilst the white mould is developed through adding a yeast culture. The curd is then cut and ladled into moulds. Brie cheese is usually left to rest for a week encouraging the rind to bloom. It normally takes 4 to 5 weeks for the brie to firm.
Substitutes For Brie Cheese
In the event that you run out of brie cheese you can always find something else to replace it with. One great substitute for Brie cheese is Camembert. This type of cheese has similar qualities with Brie cheese. Sometimes it can be rather difficult to tell the two apart because of the similar white mould with an earthy mushroom taste. Camembert cheese has a delicate rind and has a creamy centre which makes it a great substitute for brie cheese. This soft buttery, well rounded white mould can make a great substitute for brie. .