One of the surprise hits at Christmas dinner was this baked Brie cheese i paired with cranberry sauce. Brie on its own is always welcome on a cheese plate but when baked it’s even creamier, more of its flavour comes out and it’s great when paired with something savory and something sweet. I’ve always loved Brie paired with roasted whole head of garlic. Usually I smear some of the slow-roasted garlic the Crostini and top with some jam and pop in my mouth. I was going to open a jar of this fig jam I brought back from Greece but I had some cranberries left in the freezer and thought to use them up rather than throw them out.
I made my Cranberry sauce with sugar, whole cloves and simmered them until the cranberries popped and the sugars and started to thicken with the pectin in the berries. I then spiked the cranberry sauce with a sweet fortified Greek wine called Mavrodaphne and finished it with some orange zest and a good squeeze of orange juice. Crostini gets smeared with roasted garlic, baked Brie gets topped with warm cranberry sauce then Brie and cranberry sauce top the garlic and bread. Slip in the mouth and hum with delight then wash down with your favourite sparkling wine.
1- 340gr. package of fresh or frozen cranberries
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of water
1/4 cup Mavrodaphne wine (or other fortified red wine)
zest and juice of 1/2 orange
1 round of Brie cheese
some extra-virgin olive oil
splash of sparkling wine
1 head garlic
- In a small pot, add your water, sugar, cloves and Mavrodaphne and bring up to a boil over medium heat. Now gently drop in the cranberries and return to a boil then simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally. Take off the heat and add the orange zest and juice and allow to cool.
- Pre-heat your oven to 300F and slice a baguette into thin slices and brush both sides with olive oil and place on a baking tray. Now take a hold head of garlic and slice off enough of the top to just expose the garlic cloves and place in some foil, drizzle with olive oil and tightly close the foil around the garlic. Place the Crostinis and garlic in the oven and bake the bread until just toasted and the garlic for about 30 minutes.
- In the meantime, unwrap your Brie and if it came in a wooden container you may bake it in that or use a Brie baking vessel with a lid. Drizzle the brie with olive oil and some sparkling wine and place the cover on and slip into your oven for 20 minutes.
- Arrange your Crostini on a platter and carefully squeeze the roasted garlic beside the bread. Place the baked Brie on the platter and pour some cranberry sauce on the baked Brie.
- Smear roasted garlic on the Crostini then place some hot Brie and cranberry sauce on top and enjoy! Serve with a Domaine Tselepos Amalia Brut Sparkling White.
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