Best Topping Ideas for Baked Camembert
Since the cold season has firmly hit us in the Pacific Northwest, I have decided to move into comfort food recipes so y'all can get the seasonal kitchen fix you are after! One of my favorite extravagances is to bake Camembert with some garlic stuffed in the top, and serve it with grilled french bread and caramelized onion and balsamic jam.
In case you don't share my love for caramelized onion spread on some sliced cheese, I have included a bunch of other recipes for toppings at the bottom of this blog post.
Baked Camembert with Blueberry, Pecan & Maple Syrup Topping (recipe below)
Lots of Camembert comes packaged in a wooden box, and these boxes are great for baking the cheese in. Just make sure it isn't a cheap plastic one made to look like wood (yes, I have been there!!) If not, a small ramekin can be used, or oven safe pan. Also, Camembert made with non-pasteurized milk works best. I have made this with pasteurized milk Camembert, and it still goes soft, but it definitely separates a bit more. Some wide cheese knives are a good idea for spreading this as it can be harder to catch enough on smaller cheese tools.
What You Will Need
A ramekin that will fit your wheel of Camembert
A wheel of Camembert - preferably unpasteurized
French stick cut into 1" wide slices
3-6 cloves of garlic depending on the size of your Camembert
Salt & pepper
See below for the required ingredients to do each topping idea
How To Make
- Preheat your oven to 170C / 350F.
- Place the Camembert in you ramekin, and score the top half inch or so with a few cuts through the skin. If you have one that came in a wooden box, remove the plastic wrap, and place the cheese back in the wooden box, and place that inside the wooden lid so you have a double layer under the cheese.
- Insert some garlic cloves into the score lines, pushing them deep into the cheese. I find that one clove every couple of inches is enough, so if you have a small wheel, maybe around 3", then 3 cloves in a rough triangle patter works. If your wheel is larger, you will need more cloves.
- Brush the top with olive oil.
- There are so many combinations of toppings that work for Camembert, and no matter what you are using, they are added in this final stage before putting the dish in the oven.
- Baking will take around 20 minutes, and the cheese should be noticeably creamy and runny - a similar consistency to fondue so it is easy to dip or spread.
Optional Topping Combinations
Walnuts & Honey: Roughly chop a handful of walnuts and scatter on top of the Camembert. Drizzle with honey half way through baking (after about 10 minutes).
Fresh Herbs: Use one or all of rosemary, thyme, sage, or tarragon. Strip the leaves off the stems and sprinkle on top before baking.
Pine Nuts & Sundried Tomatoes: Dice a handful of sundried tomatoes (make sure you have enough to roughly cover the cheese wheel - the exact quantity will depend on the size of the cheese wheel), toss into a small skillet with some of their oil and about an equal amount of pine nuts. Cook until the pine nuts darken and are evenly toasted and then spread on top of your Camembert, without the oil from the skillet as that will overpower the cheese.
Cranberries & Thyme: Put about 1/2 a cup of cranberries in a small pan with 1 tsp of sugar. Cook down until the sugar dissolves and the cranberries are softened and lightly stewed. Add a few leaves of thyme and cook for another minute or so.
Mushrooms & Tarragon: Dice up a handful of your favorite mushrooms and fry in a pan with some butter. Once they are cooked, add about 1 tbsp of chopped tarragon. This combo is amazing if you add a little truffle oil too.
Blueberries, Pecans & Maple Syrup: Put 1/2 cup of blueberries into a skillet with 1 Tbsp of maple syrup. Simmer gently until the blueberries soften and start to break down. Rough chop a handful of pecans and add to the pan with the blueberries and maple syrup for another minute or two.