There’s a lot to love about a good baked brie – golden puff pastry wrapped around a wheel of creamy cheese and a secret sweet surprise (jam, brown sugar, nuts, etc.), where the cheese and jam meld together and ooze out of the flaky crust when you first cut into it. That’s Baked Brie’s brief moment of glory, though, so you’d better eat fast. When the cheese cools, the once-elegant pastry/cheese package turns into a congealed blob, with soggy dough that contributes little more than calories. Your party guests deserve better!
With these little phyllo cup bites, you get all of baked brie’s glory in a chic, easy-to-eat package. The already-baked phyllo dough shells (less than 20 calories each!) stay crisp, even when the cheese has cooled. Oh – and they make this appetizer one of the quickest and easiest you’ll ever make.
Not a fan of apricot preserves? Use fig jam, or raspberry jam, or leftover cranberry sauce, or a sprinkling of brown sugar, or even shallot or onion jam for something a little more savory. You can also swap out the nuts, or skip them altogether. So many options! Keep a few boxes of phyllo cups in the freezer and you’ll always be ready for a party.
Makes 30 appetizers
- 2 packages frozen mini phyllo shells (look for them next to frozen pie crusts and puff pastry)
- Approx. 8 oz. brie or camembert cheese, cut into small cubes (the rind is edible but you can cut it off if you prefer)
- Approx. ½ cup apricot preserves (or jam of choice)
- ½ cup slivered almonds, lightly toasted
Heat oven to 325F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (optional, but helpful for quick cleanup). Arrange phyllo cups on baking sheet. Place brie cube inside each cup. Top brie with a small dollup (a scant teaspoon) apricot preserves. Sprinkle with a few slivered almonds. Bake for about 8 minutes or until brie is just melted. Transfer to a serving tray and serve hot, warm or at room temperature. I usually set about half out on a tray, and keep the rest warm in an oven that’s been turned off. (Or even better – in a warming drawer if you have one.)