We’ve never been a family that traditionally has appetizers on Thanksgiving. We usually put out a pupu platter of olives, pickles and baby corn to let people graze before the main feast.
If I was going to make an appetizer, it would definitely be this baked brie. I’ve brought it with me to countless gatherings, large and small, and it has never failed to be a hit. People are always coming up to me (usually with a mouth full) raving over the brie! The beautiful thing is you can adjust the recipe for anything from a 8 ounce to a 16 ounce wheel of brie with ease.
The Pampered Chef offers a few variations which I posted about earlier this year. For purposes of Thanksgiving you could easily swap out the apricot preserves for cranberry sauce. Top with walnuts instead of pecans and you have a yummy appetizer that takes minutes to prepare and only 10 minutes in the oven. What is not to love about that??
Version 1 – Apricot preserves or cranberry sauce:
- 1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed and seeded and finely diced
- 1/4 cup apricot preserves or cranberry sauce
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1 4-inch round (8 ounces) Brie cheese with rind, room temperature
Version 2 – Brown Sugar Dijon Brie:
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds. Reserve 1/4 cup of the almonds for the top and chop the remainder for the mix.
- Preheat oven to 425°
- Cut brie in half horizontally. Place bottom half, cut side up, on large stone or cookie sheet.
- Mix jalapeno and preserves – or – brown sugar and Dijon. Add half of the nuts and mix thoroughly.
- Spread half the mixture on the bottom half of the brie round. Replace the top, cut side down. Spread the other half the mixture on top.
- Sprinkle with remaining nuts.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until center is soft and gooey. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
(Optional) Toasted baguettes:
Slice one small loaf French bread into 1/4 inch slices. Lightly brush with oil. Place bread rounds around the brie before placing in the oven.
Makes 12 servings
Kat’s tip: They aren’t kidding when they warn you to wear gloves when deseeding a jalapeno. Last time I made this was at a friend’s house and I didn’t have any gloves. I must have sneezed about 30 times because of the jalapeno fumes. Jalapeno oils get in your skin and under your finger nails, too. I felt their effect for a few days afterwards ever time.