Partridge in a Pear Crostini

I have a confession to make. Up until I made this crostini I had never in my life eaten brie. I know, that's like the most pathetic #firstworldproblem anyone's heard in a while. But it's true. It just never looked appealing and something about the name threw me off. Why is it so short? Cheese should have a flowing, strong name. "Brie" just makes it sound like something out of a tube. 

But I'm happy to report I tried it with this recipe and I'm a fan, especially if it's melted. It's basically melted butter. Which is basically perfection. The brie in this crostini mixed with honey and pear is just the right amount of salty and sweet. And what better to greet your guests coming in from the cold with than warm, bubbling brie?

INGREDIENTS (MAKES ABOUT 12 CROSTINIS):

  • 1 baguette
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 oz. brie cheese
  • 1/2 cup toasted coarsely chopped walnuts (you can toast them in the oven for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees then let cool)
  • 2 pears
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Small pinch of salt
  • A few springs of fresh thyme
  • Freshly ground pepper

TOOLS:

  • Broiler
  • Pastry brush or something to brush the bread with olive oil

 

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Make sure your rack is about six inches from the broiler element and heat the broiler on high.
  2. Slice the brie and cheese into thin pieces and set them aside. 
  3. Slice the baguette into 12 pieces, about 1/2 inch thick each. Put the bread on a baking sheet and brush each piece with olive oil on one side. 
  4. Put the bread into the broiler and toast it until it's crispy and slightly golden. This should take about one to two minutes. If it's a little overdone, whatevs. No one will care when it's covered in cheese.
  5. In a bowl, combine the honey, balsamic vinegar, and salt. Give a little stir.
  6. Take the bread and put one slice of brie followed by one slice of pear on top. 
  7. Place the bread back into the broiler until the cheese starts to melt and get a little bubbly. Bubbly brieeeeeeee.
  8. Take the bread out and drizzle the tops of the crostinis with the honey mixture. 
  9. Garnish the crostinis with your walnuts, thyme and pepper. 
  10. Serve immediately. The warmer, the better.

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