*After a few questions, I'm adding a note here: The above image is of the fried brie starter at the Wellington, but I took the actual picture myself on May 18th when we were there to eat. I am not patient enough to make my home-plates that fancy. I just want to dig in when I make something that good!
For a while now I've been wanting to recreate one of my favorite starters from The Wellington, fried brie with cranberry chutney. I finally purchased some brie at Whole Foods last week and got brave enough to make it on Saturday. As I was gathering my ingredients, I went to the pantry to get my cranberry chutney, sure I'd brought a jar from England. I found Strawberry preserve, raspberry preserve, apricot chutney, beetroot chutney... but no cranberry chutney. ALAS!
So I googled, and ended up using Martha Stewart's Cranberry-Pomegranate Relish recipe. I have a general rule of always having cranberries and lemons on hand, as they are two of my favorite flavors for almost anything- cookies, muffins, cakes, etc. and can often jazz up a simple dish. I also happened to have some huge, delicious pomegranates from Whole Foods that I'd been snacking on in greek yogurt.
Martha's recipe calls for a shallot; I only had spring onions on hand (green onions to Americans- and here's yet another interesting post from Lynneguist regarding the names and uses on both sides of the pond!) but it seemed to work, for me at least. I chopped one up very fine (green and white parts- I use both!) and sautéed it in sunflower oil. I then further modified the recipe by using my mini food chopper to chop up the majority of the cranberries so the sauce wouldn't have as large chunks in it.
I'll let you refer to Martha's site for the actual recipe (credit where credit is due!), but the left image is just after the simmer stage started and the right is the end, when I added the pomegranate.
Anyway... on to the brie!
Basic breading for frying: flour, egg whites (I don't use yolks), and breadcrumbs. I put the brie in the freezer whilst making the sauce, so for about twenty minutes. This made it much easier to cut and handle, as well as keeping it from oozing in the hot oil. I cut the wedge into four pieces, and bread-coated away before putting them in 375º F sunflower oil until the edges were crispy golden-brown. We don't have a deep fryer right now (our U.S. one died a few months before moving to England so it wasn't in our U.S. appliance stash), so I just put about 3/4" of sunflower oil in the bottom of my stovetop wok.
After draining the fried brie for a minute on some newspaper, I dove right in- and it was DELICIOUS!
And of course, even better with the sauce!
The cranberry-pomegranate sauce is fantastic, and would work on cold or hot dishes, savoury or sweet! It only took about twenty minutes to make, and I feel really confident to have added it to my cooking repertoire- I'm much more of a baker, so any cooking dish I can conquer is a great success to me.
Having made- deliciously- one of my favorite menu items makes the nights when we joke "Let's go out to eat. How about the Welly?" a little bit easier. Now if only I could find ethical, fresh haddock here for fish pie!
Any favorite restaurant dish you've mastered at home?