The Weekend Series: warm your belly with a dose of baked cheese goodness

The Weekend Series: warm your belly with a dose of baked cheese goodness

After you’ve exhausted your repertoire of cheese toasties, cheesy bakes and cheesy pastas, where do you go for a sure-fire cheese-based winter warmer? For us, we’ve started straight-up baking our cheese. No, we’re not just scooping up melted cheese with our fingers (though it’s not outside the realm of possibility) – we’re getting sophisticated with it. Take our advice – fire up the oven, grab a wheel of something tasty, and get ready to witness the unbrielievable spectacle of a freshly baked cheese wheel in all its ooey-gooey splendour.

Baked cheese fondue
If you ask us, fondue is due for a comeback. We’re not advocating that you hunt around for that old-school fondue set that your parents were given for their wedding back in the 1970s – this recipe makes it easy to do on the fly. Get yourself two boxes of soft cheese – camembert will do – a few garlic cloves, a spring of rosemary, some chilli flakes, and truffle slices. Simply score the cheese in a lattice pattern, push crushed garlic, rosemary and chilli into one cheese and truffle slices into the other, then bake them both until the cheese starts to go wobbly. After a short resting period, plate up these bad boys and scoop up the goodness with some fresh flatbread.
ImageBBC Food

Herbed baked brie
If you’ve always wanted an excuse to buy a big wheel of cheese, now is your chance. Grab a sizeable soft cheese, slice the rind off the wheel and lay it gently on a bed of herbs on a baking tray. Cook that sucker for 15 minutes, then transfer the molten cylinder to a cutting board. Sprinkle the uncovered herbs over the brie, then serve with a helping of cranberry and pear mostarda, thyme-roasted walnuts, sliced pear, crackers or a sliced baguette. You can rest assured that this recipe is a guaranteed showstopper when entertaining.
ImageBon Appétit

Simple baked brie with honey
This recipe sits towards the easy end of the difficulty scale, which is great because cheese should never be hard to prepare or consume. Obtain a slab of brie or camembert cheese and score the top in a criss-cross pattern as before. Set it on some baking paper and bake until the top is soft and runny. Still with us? Good. While it is resting, coat the cheese with chopped pistachios and drizzle it with honey and boom – you’ve got yourself a gooey good time.
ImageSerious Eats

Baked Bûcherondin appetizer
For the uninitiated, Bûcheron is a style of goat’s milk cheese native to France. Essentially, this recipe requires you to bake the cheese in a marinara sauce until it is bubbly and thick. It’s not a complicated process – simply concoct the sauce using canned crushed tomatoes, garlic, oregano and basil, then add the creamy goat’s cheese and bake until the sauce bubbles at the edges. Toast some crostini until golden brown, garnish the dish with basil and get dipping!
Image: Platings and Pairings

Baked brie with raspberry jam
If there’s one way to improve melted cheese, it’s encasing it in puff pastry. This recipe is a great party appetiser, with a wheel of brie baked inside a neat pastry parcel and crowned with jam. Simply line a baking tray with parchment paper and cut the puff pasty into squares. Place a serve of brie in the centre and top with jam. Fold the pastry up and around the cheese, then coat it with a light egg wash and cook until the pastry is golden brown and the cheese has melted. Although an easy process, the flavour combo belies the recipe’s simplicity.

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