"Cranberry Holiday Brie" recipe from Paula Deen, Author
of Paula Deen Celebrates!
... more great Paula Deen recipes on our GREAT CHEFS page!
I just love Christmas, don't you? And I love our family traditions,
like this special appetizer which starts almost every Christmas
dinner at my house, but wouldnt be out of place on the Thanksgiving
table or at a holiday open house.
Even though we can get cranberries year round, I still think of
them as a holiday fruit. But theyre not just for sauce any
more! Here I've combined dried cranberries with toasted almonds,
apricot jam and rich, rich Brie cheese, all wrapped up in a puff
pastry crust. Cut into the cheese and see the creamy Brie ooze out,
and the red cranberries--so festive! And when you taste the melting
cheese with the sweet-tart fruit, crunchy nuts, and crisp, buttery
And the best part, girls? It looks like you spent hours in the
kitchen, but it's so easy! --Paula Deen
1 sheet (1/2 package) frozen puff pastry dough
3/4 cup apricot preserves
2 tablespoons orange juice
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds
1 Brie cheese, about 13 ounces
1. Allow the pastry sheet to thaw in the package about 30 minutes, until pliable.
Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a small bowl, beat the egg with
1 teaspoon water to make an egg wash. Set aside.
2. Lightly flour a large wooden cutting board and roll out the
pastry dough into a 14-inch square. Cut off the corners to make
a circle. Save the extra dough to cut into decorative shapes for
a garnish. Spread the apricot preserves on the pastry, leaving a
2-inch margin all around edge.
3. Pour the orange juice into a small glass dish and add the cranberries,
allowing them to absorb the flavor of the orange juice for about
5 minutes, until the cranberries are soft. Drain the cranberries.
Arrange the cranberries evenly on top of apricot preserves. Arrange
the almonds evenly on the cranberries. Place the Brie on top of
the almonds. Brush the edges of the puff pastry with the egg wash.
Completely seal the Brie in the puff pastry. Seal the edges by brushing
the egg wash on one edge, as if you are gluing the edge together.
4. Spray a baking sheet with vegetable-oil cooking spray. Place
the Brie seam side down on the sheet. Decorate the top with pastry
cut-outs, rerolling scraps of dough, if desired. Brush the top with
the remaining egg wash.
5. Bake for 20 minutes. Allow to sit for at least 30 minutes before
serving; the cheese will ooze out if cut it too early! Serve with
Deen Celebrates!: Best Dishes and Best Wishes for the Best Times of
Fans of Food Network star Paula Deen enjoy her unpretentious Southern-gal
persona as much as her easy, what's-not-to-like recipes. As a writer
of four other cookbooks, including The Lady & Sons Just Desserts,
restaurant owner, and purveyor of her own product line, she's also
something of an entrepreneur. In Paul Deen Celebrates! she offers
170-plus recipes arranged by menus for traditional holidays and other,
sometimes whimsical celebrations like Elvis's Birthday and Movie-Watching
Pizza Party in Bed. The recipes, which are often Southern-rich, range
from the more traditional, such as Shrimp Etouffé, Muffuletta
Sandwiches, and Macaroni Salad, to the innovative, including Collard
Green Wantons, Grilled Chicken Pita, and Scallop and Bacon Pizza.
Her sweets include the likes of Old Fashioned Banana Pudding, Gooey
Toffee Butter Cake and Margarita Mousse. Offered also are decorating
tips, and "Paula's Pearls of Wisdom" like "treasure
today's moment's because they will tomorrows memories."
Deen's dishes couldn't be more approachable and will doubtlessly
inspire many holiday menus. Readers should know, however, that she
regularly calls for convenience products like cake mixes and canned
soups, whose use (by now something of an American tradition in itself)
can do little to make homemade food taste as good as it otherwise
might. Paula Deen Celebrates! should, however, excite Deen's many
fans, who, along with the attractive formulas, receive lots of "back-story"
on the author's own celebrations, life, and mostly good times. --Arthur