Baked Tomatillo Brie
I wish I’d come up with this recipe myself. And I should have. I mean, I love baked brie, and I love tomatillos. But typically, brie is topped with a pear chutney, a cranberry sauce, or even honey. The sweetness pairs so well with the creamy, warm brie.
But when I think of it, tomatillos are sweet also! Which is probably why cookbook author Eugenia Bone swooned when she first ate a baked tomatillo brie. She credits her friend, a proclaimed tomatillo “queen,” with the original recipe.
I’ve written about two of Ms. Bone’s books now, one a cookbook entitled Well Preserved, which contains this brie recipe and my most favorite condiment Foriana Sauce, and the other, more a memoir with recipes, entitled At Mesa’s Edge.
From the above book I’ve made her leek and cilantro pesto tart. Fabulous.
So back to this baked tomatillo brie recipe, I happened to have a brie in the freezer, left over from the holidays. I thought it was a good time to see if brie can maintain its quality once thawed. It’s been 6 months. So this was a perfect time to try out this recipe! Even though I really don’t need any reason to bake a brie….
Baked Tomatillo Brie
Adapted from Well Preserved
2 Poblano peppers
2 jalapeno peppers
4 cloves garlic
2 pounds fresh tomatillos
A few sprigs of fresh cilantro
Preheat the oven to a “roast” setting, or at least 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Peel the onion and slice it into wedges. Place them in a large roasting pan.
Remove the stems from the chile peppers and chop them up into uniform pieces. Place those over the onions.
Remove the peels from the tomatillos.
Give them a gentle warm water rinse to remove any stickiness. Dry them, then cut them into equal pieces and place in the pan. Mine were on the average size, so I cut them into sixths.
Drizzle a little olive oil over the top, and give them a sprinkle of salt.
Roast everything until nice and browned. Let cool.
Once cool, place everything from the roasting pan into a blender jar or food processor. Add a little cilantro.
Blend until it’s the consistency you like; I prefer to have some texture.
To be fair, there is no oil in Ms. Bone’s recipe, and no cilantro. I just can’t use tomatillos without at least a little bit a fresh cilantro. I kept it to a small amount, so this sauce stayed a sauce, and didn’t turn into a salsa.
What I did omit from Ms. Bone’s tomatillo sauce recipe was lemon juice. I just didn’t think it was necessary. Tomatillos, to me, are already lemony.
In Ms. Bone’s recipe, she simply let a ripe Brie come to room temperature. Then she poured the tomatillo sauce over the top. She didn’t specify if the sauce was hot or at room temperature.
My brie won’t be that runny, I know, because it’s not extremely ripe. Plus, it was frozen at one time. So I’ll be heating mine up to get that runniness that so typefies a baked brie. And the sauce will be hot as well. And instead of baking? I’m using my microwave.
Place the room temperature brie on a microwave-safe serving platter. Pour over the desired amount of tomatillo sauce. Heat in the microwave. I did this gradually, taking advantage of the power controls, because I didn’t want to “cook” the brie.
Serve with chips – I used a fun roasted red bell pepper-flavored variety.
And then, break open the brie and watch magic happen.
The mix of the warm brie and tomatillo sauce was absolutely perfect. You’ll just have to make your own to discover this fabulous flavor combination.
And the brie? I would never have guessed that it had previously been frozen. Which is really good to know. Don’t ever throw brie away!!!
Looks good! I don’t think I would have dared, but the results speak for themselves. I admire your creativity Mimi!
Thanks, but I wish I had come up with this on my own! It was incredible!
I hope you’ll make it for me when I come visit ;) And wether you came up with it or not, YOU are the one who made it and put all her love in it and that’s the only thing that matters!!
So I have always wondered this about baked Brie–do you buy an expensive Brie (nice and ripe, perhaps stinky) or do you want more of a run-of-the-mill version (think more of a “blank slate”) since you are adding the flavor, in a sense?
Great question. I would personally put out the money for the real thing. But you’re absolutely right. It’s a lot about what you put on top, and the melted cheese is the vehicle into your mouth.
Wow, I never would have thought to try brie like this. Very cool!
I never have either, but I’m glad I was intrigued!!!
This looks wonderfully decadent! Brie is one of my favorite cheese, although I don’t purchase it nearly enough. I’ve never actually used tomatillos when cooking though. Do they have a sweet taste?
They are slightly sweet, but also have a lemony tartness to them, which is why a lot of people mix tomatoes and tomatillos together.
I am simply crazy for tomatillos! And I’ve been using them a lot lately, just made a chicken with pipian sauce, to die for!
Love this recipe, particularly your use of the microwave, genius! Great way to control the amount of heat you want in your brie. I had no idea brie would freeze so well, good to know that too!
It is a good thing to know about the cheese. Seems like we always have extra after Christmas…
This looks so good and I can’t believe this isn’t a staple in restaurants, haha! I enjoy pairing Brie with savory toppings like pesto on sandwiches, but as you mentioned, on its own, it’s often paired with sweet chutneys and things along those lines. I am definitely adding this to my list of things to try out.
I’m glad, because it was so unique and fabulous. And it was fun to eat with the chips!
It truly was!
The roasted tomatillos and onions look smoky and sweet – and the fresh cilantro bright! I agree; tomatillos have a lime-like quality to them. Beautiful recipe. This and a nice rosé would equate to the perfect happy hour with some good friends.
Absolutely. We were actually drinking beer, and had this on father’s day!!!
I like that combination much more! Elevated chips and salsa, Mimi style. The spice would be great with a nice, light microbrew. :-) Definitely a Father’s Day my hubby wouldn’t argue with!
Sorry, do you ever need a reason for baked cheese??
What a fab combo! And so pretty with the flowers. 😊
All I can say is WOW – that sounds so good. My daughter & I both love anything with brie and this looks like a winner for us.
It’s so much more savory than a baked brie with honey, which I think are too sweet, myself. But just as enjoyable!
I love tomatillos, but have never ventured to cook with them myself (I’ll order anything in a restaurant with tomatillos); this recipe will be my kickoff in using tomatillos here at home.
It’s a great one to start with!!! Enjoy!
Wow, Mimi! Yum!!!
Wow, this looks terrific! I agree, cilantro would make the perfect addition. Can’t wait to try it!
Do! It’s really unique, but so delicious!!!
OMG! This plate is very “seductive”… I bet the sweetness of the brie has to be amazing with the pepper sauce… so yummy!
It really was even better than I expected it to be!!!
I wouldn’t have thought brie would successfully freeze so thanks for that tip! After telling you a while back that chillis varieties were limited here, Mexican style chillis were everywhere in autumn, so I figure if a wait 6 months tomatillos might make their debut. We loved baked brie too, but alas have never tried tomatillos
They’re really unique in flavor, so I hope you can try them soon! And yes, I couldn’t tell that the brie had been frozen for 6 months!!!
Lovely recipe! I had a microwaved brie (not mine) at a friend’s house on Father’s Day with a fig chutney over top, and found it way too sweet. I’m a savory gal myself, and absolutely adore tomatillos! Perhaps next time we have a gathering I’ll offer this up as an appetizer. Tomatillos abound in my neck of the woods as we have a store with a large Mexican food section with fresh tomatillos year round (and cactus!) just a mile up the road. Seems strange with being in the Pacific Northwest but I have never lacked for fresh tomatillos, lots of varieties of chile peppers, both dried and fresh. Thank you thank you for this!
You are so welcome. You really need to try it. It’s really fun with good chips, as well!!!
Mmm…I’ll have to see if I can buy tomatillos here anywhere?!
It’s one of the few foods that I can find where I live! But there are so many I can’t get my hands on..
Stunning photos Mimi!
Thank you Miss Em!
Very nice tomatillo sauce – I agree with you about not using lemon, and adding the cilantro. I would never have considered this pairing, and now I will have to try it! (I also do my Brie in the microwave!) ~ David
I know! I was so taken back when I saw this recipe. But trust me – it’s incredible. The original recipe called for “1/2 bottle of lemon juice” for the tomatillo sauce. There wasn’t even a bottle size listed, which is a terrible oversight. To me, tomatillos are already lemony, and it’s their sweetness that works so well with the brie.
Very intrigung recipe – I do not think that I have ever seen tomatillos in stores around here but I will certainly keep my eyes peeled for them as this recipe looks to good not to try it – we do love baked brie so the topping will be a welcome change of taste to the one I ususally prepare!
Thank you! This baked brie is definitely unique, but oh so delicious! I hope you can find tomatillos, if not for this recipe, just for a good sauce. They’re also quite unique in flavor!
The sauce must be so hot! The recipe is intriguing and terrific! :)
The sauce isn’t hot – the chile peppers get milder when they’re roasted. But do try this brie – it’s pretty incredible!
What an incredible recipe my friend, the brie adds so much flavour :D
Choc Chip Uru
Thank you so much!
I did not know you could freeze brie, so good to know. I love savory with brie but a little spicy and savory with brie is even better. Looks amazing especially that photo with the brie oozing out, I just want to grab that with my tortilla chip.
I hope you get the opportunity to make this, if you like Southwestern flavors. It’s so unique and delicious!!!
Oh my goodness what an awesome idea! I love brie- one of my favorite cheeses, but as you said, almost always pair it with fruit or brown sugar (as made obvious here: http://pinchpurrfect.wordpress.com/2014/06/06/baked-brie-with-apricot-preserves-and-brown-sugar/). I love Southwestern flavors, and like you- always want to add some cilantro :-D I will definitely give this more savory approach a try next time I have brie on hand!
Personally, I think a lot of baked bries are too sweet; I prefer chutney topping mine. But I’d never pass on one, either!!! This one was pretty incredible. Do try it!
My wife came home with some Brie yesterday and now I went searching for a recipe to use and I found it.
Great recipe Mimi, thanks for sharing it!
Oh my god you are going to love it! It’s such a change from the usual chutney-topped bries, which I love, too!!!