This post comes courtesy of Jennifer Farley, blogger, recipe developer and food photographer at Savory Simple.
Around the holidays, I always like to keep some simple, crowd-pleasing recipes on hand. Appetizers don’t always need to be fancy. People want small, tasty bites to hold them over until the main attractions. When I was growing up my mother would wrap Gouda cheese in crescent roll dough and serve fresh baked wedges as an appetizer. It took no time to make and everyone loved it. What’s not to love about oozing cheese and flaky dough?
That was my inspiration for this appetizer. All you need for this recipe is puff pastry, brie cheese, and a fruit spread of your choice. If you want to be fancy you can certainly make everything from scratch — but trust me, this tastes wonderful and is an easy holiday appetizer that you can even take on the road. If you swap out the fruit spread for chocolate, you have an easy dessert!
If you’ve never worked with puff pastry before, you should be able to find it in the freezer section of your grocery store. My tips for working with puff: roll it out evenly and don’t let it get too soft. Puff pastry is full of butter and as that butter melts the dough becomes difficult to handle.
Holiday Brie Bites
Brie, preferably bite-sized versions
A fruit spread of your choice, such as William-Sonoma’s Fruit Pâté
Egg wash (1 egg yolk, beaten with a pinch of salt and splash of water)
Roll out a thin square of puff pastry. The thinner the dough, the prettier the final result will be. Place a small amount of brie in the center and top it with a small dollop of fruit spread (1/2 – 1 tsp).
Wrap the puff pastry tightly around the brie, pinching the ends together and smoothing them out a bit. Cut away excess dough if necessary. This will be the bottom, so it doesn’t have to be very pretty, but you want to seal any holes. Place the dough facing pretty side up on a sheet tray.
Repeat this process until you’ve made all the bites. (NOTE: If you’re planning to take these to a party, stop here. Wrap the bites individually in plastic wrap and refrigerate them. Transport the uncooked brie bites and egg wash in a cooler. Then follow the rest of the recipe 20 minutes before serving.)
Use a small knife to poke 3 to 4 decorative holes in the top, then brush the top and sides with egg wash. Bake at 430 degrees F for 20 minutes. Serve immediately.
About the author: Jennifer Farley is the owner, recipe developer and food photographer of Savory Simple. She graduated from the Culinary Arts program at L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, MD where she trained in classic French technique. Jennifer currently works as a recreational cooking instructor and social media marketer. She resides in the Washington DC metropolitan area and can often be found exploring the local culinary scene in search of new inspiration.