If you have ever wondered what French foods go best with Brie, then this article is most certainly for you. I mean really what better reminder of that fondly remembered visit to France is there, than to enjoy one of France’s finest, and certainly most famous worldwide cheese exports.
However there can be much more to this French masterpiece than you imagine, with a little thought it can be a meal in itself, it’ll gladly follow any fish course, or my personal French favorite is ‘Blanquette de veau’, which is a delicious Veal recipe, with a creamy Mushroom and Onion sauce.
In my opinion though Brie is at its best when served simply with a warm crusty French baguette, a few fresh slices of a crisp French apple, and sweet pear. Accompanied with a strong red wine. A Pinot Noir grape variety would work well, with its strength and heavy tannins. This may sound quite strange, but they are the most delightful accompaniments.
Now first of all, lets clear up a small point. When I mention Brie I’m not talking about the rubbery stuff you find in some Deli sandwiches, I’m talking the smooth, slightly nutty tasting, and delightfully creamy Brie, the one you enjoyed just plainly served while in France.
Sadly though, for those of us living in the US, the sale of unpasteurized cheese is quite regulated. So the really good stuff never makes it to our shores. But don’t fear. Stored, ripened and served the right way many pasteurized varieties would even satisfy the elaborate palates of many a Frenchman.
So if you’re going to serve it simply, or as part of a more elaborate cheese course, a few pointers are really worth noting down.
– Purchase the most expensive French Brie that you can afford, when it comes to cheese (or for that matter, wine) yes, you really do get what you pay for!
– A common mistake is eating it too soon! For that authentic nutty creamy flavor let it ripen, which means eat it just before or just after the “use by” date. And not before! A good tip is to buy several cheeses a few weeks apart, so you have a cycle of cheeses “ripening” in your refrigerator, and some will be ready to use.
– Another mistake, is serving it right out the refrigerator, a definite NO NO! To get the best flavors , you really have got to let the cheese rest at room temperature for a least an hour before you’re going to use it.
Enjoy! Vive la France!