The “king of cheeses” gets a Royal Approval

January 19, 2012

While the origins of French brie are veiled in the mists of history, some accounts link it to the indomitable Emperor Charlemagne. Like all great kings, Charlemagne showed great interest not just in the protection of the realm and the administration of justice but in fostering the betterment of his people through education, culture, and the arts. Thus, it is not surprising to see him associated with “the king of cheeses”–to use Tallyerand’s eulogy of French brie.

A wheel of Brie. Photo by Claire Brosman

Why not muse of Charlemagne and his twelve peers, Roland and Oliver, while enjoying brie with a French baguette? Or even better, while enjoying some baked brie and a glass of red wine? You will be delighted with this cheese that also thrilled the great Charles.

Try these two delicious recipes today!

Preheat the oven to 335°

6 large Portobello mushrooms, sliced
2 onions, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 8″ wheel of brie
4 tablespoons butter

– Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat.

– Add the chopped onions and sautée for about 4 minutes

– Add the sliced mushrooms and sautée for another 2 minutes

– Add the chopped fresh thyme and salt and sautée for another 6 minutes. Remove from the heat.


– Cut the brie wheel in half, lengthwise. (It will help if the brie is very cold. The knife will stick less). 

– Place each of the two brie circles, rind-side down (cream part of the cheese face up), into its own Pyrex pie dish. Spoon half of the sautéed mushrooms and onion mixture over each.

Bake for 20 minutes

Enjoy it with a French baguette– voilá!

Makes an appetizer for about 14 people.

  Homemade Recipe for Baked Brie with sweet toppings and brandy

     Preheat oven to 350°

8″ wheel of brie

1  cup of raspberry jam

1 cup of finely chopped dried fruit (a good combination is apricots and dried cranberries; but you can also try some dried cherries or figs)

Swig of brandy (or similar liqueur)

1/2 tsp of lemon peel

2 tsp of sugar

Combine everything except the brie and the raspberry jam in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Simmer over low heat, stirring constantly, for four more minutes .

Place the brie (with its rind) on an oven-proof plate, coat the top of it with the raspberry jam, and then top with the heated fruit mix.

Bake at 350°  for about 15 minutes.

Voilá! Enjoy it with a fresh French baguette.



Print Friendly, PDF & Email
  • Pingback: Brie helps Prince Talleyrand triumph in Vienna()

  • Pingback: January 28 – Great in every sense()

  • Pingback: Romanée-Conti: symbol of tradition and nobility()

  • EliseHougesen

    Beet Salad
    Cook 8 to 10 beets until they are tender, about 20 to 30 minutes. Do not cut off the leaves or roots and do not pierce the beets with a fork to test them. There should be no bleeding. Draw the skins off the hot beets and cut off the leaves and rotts. Cut the beets crosswise into very thin slices, retaining all the juice. Simmer ½ cup each of tarragon vinegar and water with ¼ teaspoon caraway seeds, 3 cloves, 2 peppercorns, ½ bay leaf, and salt to taste for 9 minutes. Strain the hot marinade over the warm beets and teir juice. Add about 6 whole cloves, or a tablespoon of horseradish. Let the salad cool and chill it.

  • EliseHougesen

    Basic Mayonnaise
    Beat 3 egg yolks well and add ½ teaspoon each of salt and dry mustard and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Add ½ teaspoon tarragon vinegar, and gradually add ½ cup olive oil, drop by drop, beating constantly. Add ½ teaspoon more tarragon vinegar and beat ½ cup more olive oil, drop by drop, into the sauce. Again add 1 teaspoon vinegar and ½ cup olive oil in a thin stream, beating constantly until the mixture is thick and yellow. If the mayonnaise should separate, beat an egg yolk in another bowl and slowly add the curdled mayonnaise, beating constantly.

  • EliseHougesen

    Combine 3 cups finely diced pineapple with 1 ½ cups each of chopped celery and diced apples. Sprinkle the mixture with the juice of ½ lemon and bind it at once with tart mayonnaise. Add salt to taste and mound the salad in the center of a crystal salad bowl. Surround the base of the salad with marinated beets, prepared as for beet salad and cut with a cooky cutter, and lay half walnuts on the beets. Garnish the mounded salad with more beet slices and with truffle cutouts.”
    (Commercial mayonnaise and pickled beets may be used, however, here are some recipes for the ambitious)

  • EliseHougesen

    Diplomat Salad of Old Vienna
    “The beautiful Viennese salads really lie halfway between arranged salads and tossed salads, and they are usually served from crystal salad platters or bowls. Many of them stem from a period when fresh vegetables were scarce in winter and the root vegetables had to be used, lightened by an occasional green salad the cook cuts from a sunny window box with a snip just before dinner…

  • Brie is a French type of cheese that goes back 1,200 years, back to the days of Charlemagne. His love for quality, excellence, and culture led him to single out and praise this cheese. This royal endorsement has paid real dividends: 1,200 years later we are still finding new ways to enjoy it. Try one or both of these recipes… you will quickly see how right Charlemagne was.

Previous post:

Next post: