Brie is an off-white, soft-ripened cheese, usually made from cow’s milk. It has a bloomy rind of white mold, which is considered to be a delicacy.
What Is Soft Ripened Cheese?
Brie is described as a soft ripened cheese. What exactly is a ripened cheese?
A soft-ripened cheese is a specific style of cheese, this includes the rind, texture of the cheese and how the cheese is aged or ripened.
Cheeses in the soft-ripened category, such as Brie cheese, are also referred to as bloomy rind cheese.
Soft- ripened cheeses ripen from the outside first, closest to the rind, and then slowly ripen towards the middle of the cheese.
If you’ve ever cut into a wheel of brie that is soft and runny around the edges and firmer and white in the very middle, you’ve seen an example of this.
Once you have sliced or cut into a wheel of soft-ripened cheese, it no longer continues to ripen.
Read More Here About The Rich History of Fermented Foods
The Flavor Brie Cheese
The flavor of brie is rich, buttery, fruity, and increasingly earthy with age.
It has a runny, creamy texture and a strong earthy aroma.
Brie originated in Seine-et-Marne France, and is a soft farm house cheese. Authentic French brie though, cannot be imported into the United States.
Why? As it is made with raw milk and would need to be aged for at least 60 days to qualify for U.S. importation.
Unfortunately, that amount of time would render the brie overripe for consumption.
However, France does export a stabilized version of brie that is available in the U.S.
Stabilized French brie is cut before the cheese has matured, giving it a longer shelf life.
And thanks to France we have a stabilized version of brie, giving us a Cherry Walnut Baked Brie.
Cherry Walnut Baked Brie
1 – 8 ounce round or slice of Brie cheese
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup apple juice, unsweetened
French bread baguette, sourdough or similar type bread, sliced and toasted. You can also serve with assorted crackers.
Preheat oven to 350°.
Place cheese in a 9-inch pie plate. In a small bowl, combined cherries, walnuts, brown sugar and juice. Spoon over cheese.
Bake 15-20 minutes or until cheese is softened. Serve with toasted bread or crackers.
Try these recipes with other types of cheeses. The first two are also a soft cheese like brie.