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what is brie cheese

  • 26 minutes read time

What is Brie cheese

In today's article I will explain to you in a very detailed way what Brie cheese is, and why it is so famous all over the world.

What Is A Cream Pie?

Brie is a soft, creamy and buttery cheese produced all over the world. It has a smooth, flowery edible crust made from white mold and a rich, creamy center.

what is brie cheese

Brie cheese is typically made from cow's milk, although it can also be made from goat's milk. Cheese is high in fat and calcium, with a decent amount of salt. It is also rich in protein and vitamins A and B-6, as well as minerals, including selenium.

I hope this initial taste piqued your curiosity? If so, then stay there and read on for this article, which will surely increase your knowledge of this delicious cheese.

What is Brie cheese

Many ask us, and with good reason, what is brie cheese anyway? For many it is quite unknown and that is why we want to clarify the reader.

Brie is a white, soft cheese, usually made from cow's milk. It has a white mold rind, which is considered a gourmet delicacy. Brie originates from Seine-et-Marne, France, and is a soft farmhouse cheese.

Brie has a distinct flavor, buttery, fruity and increasingly earthy as it ages. It has a dripping, creamy texture and a distinct earthy aroma.

what is brie cheese

Authentic French brie cannot be imported into Brazil because it is made with raw milk and therefore would have to be aged for at least 60 days to be eligible for import. Unfortunately, that amount of time would make the brie too ripe to consume. 

However, French brie can be found in Brazil, where it is made as a soft-maturing cheese with a creamy-white interior and white rind and comes in slices. French stabilized brie is cut before maturation to give it a longer shelf life.

The flavor is buttery, rich, and characteristic of traditional French brie made from raw milk. It becomes more earthy and fruity over time. Pasteurized milk Brie has a milder flavor than real French brie.

Brie is one of the best known French cheeses, and it is also made in other countries, such as Brazil, the United States, etc. Pasteurized whole and skimmed cow's milk, as well as goat's milk, are used to make national and international versions of brie.

what is brie cheese

Origin of Brie cheese

Before we go on to talk in more detail about brie cheese, it is essential to understand its history and identity.

The best known of all Bries is the Brie de Meaux, in our opinion is the biggest of all. This wonderful, buttery, earthy cheese has been a royal favorite on numerous occasions.

Brie De Meaux is still handmade, although at a distance of 50 kilometers east of Paris, in the Ile-de-France region. It has a long history, dating back more than twelve hundred years!

In the Middle Ages

The AOC Brie de Meaux was originally founded in the Middle Ages by the monks of the Priory of Rueil in Brie. Its acclaim began when, in 774, Charlemagne, the French Emperor, visited the Priory and discovered a cheese that pleased him so much that he requested that it be sent to his castle in Aachen.

In 1217, King Philippe-Auguste considered the cheese so excellent that he sent two hundred Brie de Meaux cheeses to all members of the court as New Year's gifts.

The famous poet Eustache Deschamps was a lover of cheese but not of France; he said "Brie de Meaux is the only good thing to come out of this country“. 

During Louis XVI's famous escape from prison in Sausse, Varennes, he missed critical intervals to satisfy his voracious hunger with Brie and red wine.

in the sixteenth century

Brie de Meaux cheese made a name for itself in France, but it also caught the attention of some foreign rulers. At the time, King Henry IV of England was enchanted by Brie cheese during a dinner with the Queen at the ancient castle of Meaux, on 15 February 1594.

The story goes that afterwards, the Queen always asked for cheese to be served to please her husband and, according to legend, he preferred to enjoy a Brie with his wife, Queen Margot, rather than joining his lover, Gabrielle. d'Estrees.

what is brie cheese

in the 19th century

It was in the 19th century that Brie de Meaux really saw its popularity skyrocket.

At one of the most prestigious banquets in history, the Congress of Vienna, the 19th century French diplomat Talleyrand is said to have called for a break in the division of nations following the fall of the French Empire in order to organize a cheese contest. 

The most delicious variety of cheeses from around the world has been chosen, and everything has been carefully scrutinized.

The Count of Ségur introduced Limberger, Stilton was represented by Lord Castlereagh of England, the Baron of Falck of the Netherlands nominated Limberger, Italy chose Strachino, and Switzerland selected the Gruyere cheese as just a few examples.

The Duke of Talleyrand remained silent until the end, when Brie was brought to the table.

After the vote, everyone praised French cuisine and declared that there was no other cheese that came close to Brie de Meaux, proclaiming the new king of cheeses: “Le Roi des Fromages"

what is brie cheese

Brie cheese flavor

The taste of brie cheese is very similar to that of camembert cheese. For many people, it tastes grassy, salty, nutty, fruity and mushroom-like. Its flavor cannot be compared to other cheeses, such as gruyere or the gouda. 

When compared to Camembert cheese, brie cheese has a milder flavor with a more buttery, creamy feel. For Camembert, the flavor and aromas are earthy and more intense.

The white mold rind in brie cheese is also edible and very tasty. Brie cheese can be used in many ways, but it should be kept in the coldest room in your refrigerator to prevent it from going rancid too quickly.

What are the different types of Brie cheese

Brie is a well-known cheese, which has resulted in numerous variations over the years. The French government, on the other hand, recognizes only two versions as authentically French:

  • Brie de Meaux
  • Melun Brie

These are the 2 types of brie cheese, which are recognized and authenticated, all other types of brie cheese do not have this recognition, however they are still very tasty cheeses with a very high gourmet refinement.

what is brie cheese

These are the 5 most popular types of brie cheese worldwide:

  • Brie de Meaux – This Brie originates from the city of Meaux and has a mild taste and smell. It is produced in large forms, normally weighing about 1.5 kg.
  • Melun Brie – This Brie has a stronger flavor and aroma than Brie de Meaux. It is made on smaller wheels, typically weighing about 1.3 kg.
  • brie noir – It is a type of brie cheese that has been aged for longer than the typical five weeks. It is darker, drier, crunchier and tastier than younger brie.
  • Double- and triple-crème brie – Cheeses labeled “double-” or “triple-crème” have extra cream added to the mixture before the curd forms. “Double-crème” cheese has a butterfat content of at least 60%, while “triple-cream” requires at least 75%.
  • Herbed Brie – While most brie cheese is sold plain, there are also brie cheeses where herbs and other ingredients are added during the manufacturing process. The most common ingredients are thyme, rosemary and garlic.
what is brie cheese

Differences between Brie and Camembert cheese

Brie and Camembert can be served the same way, have comparable histories, and are produced from similar recipes, but there are significant distinctions between them. Here's what you need to know about each of them.

History and Origin

Although there is no official record, it is believed that Brie cheese has been around longer than Camembert cheese.

While both cheeses originate from France, Brie originates from Ile-de-France, and its name descends from the Brie region. Camembert cheese is made in Normandy, in northwest France.

Production

Brie and Camembert are both cow's milk cheeses, but one has the highest fat content. Brie cheese has more milk fat because the addition of cream results in a creamier texture.

You can also buy triple cream Brie cheese, which is extremely smooth, creamy, and delicious.

Size

This is one area where these two cheeses really excel. Until I bought both at the same time, I had never noticed this before. Maybe you also never repaired.

Brie cheese is often sold by the slice, a wedge of the larger wheel, while Camembert is sold whole in its characteristic form. 

The reason for this is that Brie, on the other hand, comes in a much larger size. A Brie wheel measures between 22 and 42 centimeters in diameter, while Camembert is only 13 centimeters width.

However, the “baby Brie” is currently sold in many supermarkets, which is comparable in size to Camembert but has a more delicate flavor.

flavor and texture

Camembert and Brie are very similar in terms of flavor. Both are said to have a nutty, fruity, herbaceous, earthy, and even mushroom flavor.

Flavor variations are subtle, but Brie has a creamier, butterier flavor, while Camembert has a deeper, earthier, more flavorful flavor and fragrance.

what is brie cheese

Health benefits of Brie cheese

The health benefits of Brie cheese are attributable to its richness in proteins, vitamins and minerals.

Brie cheese is rich in casein protein, vitamin B12 for energy production, calcium for strong bones, and vitamin A for a stronger immune system response.

Brie cheese can help with weight loss and can be included in a balanced diet.

Can help with weight loss

In the past, people were advised to avoid full-fat dairy products like brie for weight loss, as the fat in dairy was thought to cause weight gain.

It turns out that's not so. So not a direct link between whole milk and body weight, according to one study published in the European Journal of Nutrition.

Casein, which is a milk protein present in most cheeses, including brie cheese, is a high quality protein that is adored by bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts.

This is due to its long-lasting protein-feeding capabilities. Casein protein digestion is slower, so it's great for long periods without eating, such as overnight.

Helping the individual stay full longer and eat fewer calories. Studies have shown that a diet rich in casein can help you lose weight, especially when combined with an exercise routine.

The person will have better control over food choices and consume less in general, as a high protein diet it is more satisfying.

what is brie cheese

Can increase energy and mood

A serving of Brie cheese contains a good amount of vitamin B12 or cobalamin, which is an important nutrient for healthy nerve function.

DNA synthesis and normal nerve cell activity are dependent on vitamin B12. Since the body is not able to synthesize vitamin B12 by itself, it must be obtained through food.

We risk a vitamin B12 deficiency if you don't consume enough, known as megaloblastic anemia, in which our body is unable to effectively transport oxygen to vital organs. This condition causes weakness and tiredness.

It is important to increase your vitamin B12 intake, both to prevent a disability and to improve energy levels.

In addition, a vitamin B12 deficiency has been linked to a severe depression. Vitamin B12 is also beneficial for those who suffer from adverse symptoms of vitamin B1 deficiency.

For individuals with depression, higher levels of vitamin B12 have been linked to better recovery results, indicating a boost in mood.

May contribute to bone strengthening

Brie cheese is one of the few dairy products that meets or exceeds the recommended daily allowance for calcium (5%). Calcium is an important mineral involved in formation, strength, and healthy bone growth.

According to one study, take calcium supplements and eating more calcium-rich foods can help reduce bone fragility.

If you don't consume enough calcium, your bones can weaken and put you at risk of osteoporosis. You should consume between 1,000 to 1,200 milligrams of calcium daily to ensure recommended levels of this vitamin.

what is brie cheese

Can strengthen the immune system

The vitamin A It is a fat-soluble vitamin that contributes to the development and strengthening of the immune system. Has strong anti-inflammatory properties, which help boost the immune system response and fight viral infections such as the common cold and stomach flu.

A lack of vitamin A can occur if you don't eat enough foods that are rich in this vitamin. It's also something to think about, as a vitamin A deficiency is the most prevalent disease in the world.

The vitamin A insufficiency, on the other hand, can make you more susceptible to illness and have a harder time fighting off infection.

May promote heart health

Although brie cheese is high in saturated fat, it also contains a variety of other components that can benefit heart health, such as protein, calcium and vitamin D. In addition, recent studies suggest that full-fat dairy products such as brie cheese may be beneficial for the heart.

One study published in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism in 2021, concluded that consumption of dairy fat was linked to a decreased incidence of heart disease.

While the results are encouraging, the researchers stress that further research is needed to determine how high-fat dairy products affect heart health.

Nutritional value of Brie cheese

Nutritional data per slice of brie cheese (approximately 28g) are:

nutrientsThe amount
calories95 Kcal
Fat7.9 g
Sodium178 mg
carbohydrates0 g
Fiber0 g
Sugar0 g
Protein5.9 g
Calcium52.2 mg
Phosphor53.3 mg
Vitamin A168 IU
B12 vitamin0.468 mcg

calories

A 28g slice of brie cheese has 95 calories. Its caloric content is mostly made up of fat, with the rest coming from proteins. Brie cheese contains approx. 75% of fat and 25% of protein into calories.

fats

A 28g slice of brie cheese has 7.9g of total fat, 4.93g of saturated fat, 2.27g of monounsaturated fats, and 0.23g of polyunsaturated fats.

Saturated fats should represent about 10% of the total daily consumption of fats, while the rest should come from unsaturated varieties. Monounsaturated fats make up 2,27 grams in a single slice of brie cheese.

Protein

Brie cheese is rich in dairy proteins. A slice of 28 grams contains 5,9 grams of protein. Brie is made with whole milk, water, protein (casein and whey), fat, sugar, vitamins and minerals are its main components.

During the cheese making process, water and whey are removed, leaving only curd casein.

Vitamins and Minerals

Brie cheese is a nutrient-dense cheese rich in calcium, phosphorus, vitamin A, and vitamin B-12. A 28-gram slice of brie cheese has 52 milligrams of calcium.

It also contains 7% from the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of phosphorus, 20% from the RDA of vitamin A, and 20% from the RDA of b12 vitamin.

what is brie cheese

how is brie cheese made

The key to achieving the right consistency and full spectrum of tastes is allowing the Brie cheese to take care of itself. The maturation and smoothing of the crust are essential for the development of flavor and texture.

The process starts with pasteurized or raw milk from cows, and enzymes and rennet are added to the milk, helping it to clot. A yeast culture is also added to promote white mold. 

After the curd has hardened, it is cut and rolled into molds, with any extra whey being removed. It is then carefully sprinkled to preserve its mild flavor while preventing excessive mold growth.

Next, the cheese is aged for a week, allowing the rind to develop and the complexities to improve. The maturation of Brie cheese normally goes from firm to ripe between 4 to 5 weeks, in order to have a more slippery texture.

The use of raw or pasteurized milk depends on the type of Brie. Likewise, each cheese has its own unique set of rennet requirements.

Organic Brie is often pasteurized, but if you're not sure, checking the label or asking the seller is usually a good idea.

how to store brie cheese

Find out how to store Brie cheese so it lasts as long as possible and doesn't spoil.

Room temperature

Brie should be served at room temperature after being refrigerated. Remove the cheese from the fridge an hour before serving it for better flavor and texture.

Although brie cheese tastes better when eaten raw, it can only be kept at room temperature for a maximum of 4 hours, after which it should be put back in the fridge.

Best way to store Brie in the fridge

The ideal way to store fresh Brie is in the vegetable drawer of the fridge, and in its original closed packaging.

How long does Brie cheese last in the refrigerator drawer unopened in its original packaging? When stored correctly, Brie can last up to two months in the fridge.

However, wrap it in kraft paper or wax paper after opening the cheese. Avoid storing it in plastic paper, since whole cheeses need to breathe.

what is brie cheese

How to store Brie in the Freezer

If you're wondering how long Brie will last in the freezer, it's safe to say that the freezer is an option. Although most people believe that freezing soft cheese is not a good idea and that the best place to keep Brie is in the fridge. Although it is preferable, than having to throw the cheese in the trash.

To freeze whole Brie, wrap it in aluminum foil, then place it in a freezer bag and push out as much air as possible before closing. Put it in the freezer and use it to make baked or grilled Brie cheese.

To freeze slices of Brie, you must line a baking sheet with a silicone mat and place the slices of cheese in a single layer to prevent sticking. Then put the tray in the freezer for several hours until the cheese is solidified, then you can put the cheese in a freezer bag or an airtight container in the freezer.

To thaw the brie cheese, remove it from the freezer and place in the refrigerator. Thin slices take approx. one hour to defrost, and a whole cheese will take all night to fully thaw. Thawing brie cheese is not necessary if you intend to melt the cheese.

what is brie cheese

How to eat Brie cheese

When preparing Brie, remove it from the fridge 60 minutes before serving. The cheese will be creamier if you let it come to room temperature before eating.

Place the wheel or wedge on a board with a knife and your choice of side dishes. If serving a wheel, cut one or two small wedges ahead of time. This will give your guests an idea of an appropriate portion size.

If serving a wedge, don't cut off the end of the cheese, which is often the tastiest part. Instead, cut along the side of the wedge. This will ensure that everyone can taste every part of the cheese.

Brie tastes best when eaten slowly. No need to scoop half the wedge, spread the cheese or make a sandwich out of it. Just combine a small piece of cheese with a small piece of bread for an elegant yet simple meal.

And yes, you can eat the shell! In fact, it is considered by some to be gaucho to just scrape the inside of the cheese and avoid the crust. Again, go ahead and set an example for guests in case they get confused.

What drinks go with Brie cheese

Brie cheese is completed with the drink that goes perfectly with it. So I show you which drinks go best with this delicious cheese.

Chardonnay

One of the most distinctive features of brie is its total fat. It is a cheese with a high fat content. To cut through fat, brie needs an acidic counterpart that is sharp. A Chardonnay with which to serve the cheese makes an excellent combination.

The acidity of the wine helps to cleanse the palate, preventing the richness of the cheese from overpowering it. The wine has enough body to balance the creaminess of the cheese, which makes it an excellent addition.

Pinot Noir

Brie cheese tends to take on a mushroom-like texture that becomes more prominent as the cheese matures.

Pinot Noir might not be the first wine that comes to mind when I think of a smoother cheese, but it is the perfect complement to the cheese's distinctive flavors. It is also acidic and light enough not to overlap.

what is brie cheese

Chenin Blanc

Brie has a delicate nutty aroma, similar to that of almonds. A slightly nude Chenin Blanc, with the same nutty subtlety, is also wonderful.

The crispness of the apple and pear notes in Chenin Blanc contrast with the nutty brie and help bring it out. The strong acidity of this wine helps to reduce the high fat content of brie.

Riesling

The taste of brie has been compared to that of freshly baked butter. A slightly dry Riesling will complement the cheese's delicate sweetness well.

Riesling grapes are more difficult to grow, and the resulting wine is rich in acidity. This Riesling has just a little sweetness to complement the sweetness of the cheese, but still has plenty of acidity to keep the combination from becoming cloying. Dried Rieslings are also compatible with this cheese.

champagne

Brie is a wonderful combination for the toasty flavor and the breeze of Champagne due to its buttery and earthy tones.

Champagne is equally acidic, as are Chardonnay and Chenin Blanc. This acidity complements the deliciously carbonated quality of the sparkling wine in a similar way to Chardonnay and Chenin Blanc.

Brie, on the other hand, softens the fruity characteristics of Champagne while increasing its crisp acidity. Brie with a little baguette is one of the best combinations with Champagne.

Sauvignon Blanc

White wine pairs very well with soft, creamy cheeses like brie, as crispy whites complement them. Sauvignon Blanc is another good combination because it is typically paired with goat cheese, which has both earthy and sour undertones. The crunchy and fruity qualities of the wine invite these elements to come out.

Brie can be made from goat's milk. Goat's milk brie is earthy, tart and nutty with a smooth flavor profile. A Sauvignon Blanc can help bring out these tastes. The wine also has a significant acidity level, which the cheese will appreciate as it cuts through the fatty flavors.

If you like a Sauvignon Blanc, don't be afraid to pair it with a goat's milk brie. Consider a glass of cheese alone or a glass of cranberry, brie, apple and thyme crostini.

what is brie cheese

Brie cheese substitutes

If you want a cheese that replaces brie, because it doesn't exist in your region or for any other reason, check out the best options:

camembert

Camembert cheese is a good substitute for Brie because it tastes very similar to Brie. Camembert is also a native French cured cheese that is usually served at room temperature. It has a smaller diameter than Brie cheese, but what it lacks in size, it more than makes up for in flavor.

Ripened cheese, on the other hand, has a more intense flavor when compared side by side, which will certainly give your meal a unique flavor.

When substituting Brie for Camembert cheese, keep in mind that Camembert cheese can have a more slippery texture.

Fromager d'Affinois

This French cheese is an excellent substitute for Brie cheese. It is made by the firm Fromagerie Guilloteau, and has the same characteristics as Brie cheese.

Like Brie cheese, it is a double-cured soft cream cheese. The only difference is that Fromager d'Affinois undergoes an ultrafiltration process.

This process offers a pleasant, sweet flavor that can turn any simple brie recipe into something you love to make every day.

If you don't have Brie cheese, you can use Fromager d'Affinois as a substitute. The only downside to using Fromager d'Affinois is that it has a stronger flavor than Brie cheese.

When using this cheese instead, use only half the amount compared to brie.

Explorateur cheese

Soft cheese with triple cream is also a native French cheese. It is a cured cow's milk cheese, like Brie cheese. It was produced in the Île-de-France region of France in the 1950s to commemorate the first American satellite, “Explorer”

Explorer's flavor is smooth and buttery, with hints of mushrooms and fruity undertones; it can be a wonderful compliment to your meals. Cheese has a firm interior that softens as it ages.

Explorateur cheese has a mild flavor similar to Brie cheese, making it an excellent substitute. When replacing, use a 1:1 ratio.

what is brie cheese

Recipes that use Brie cheese

By now you should be pretty clear about brie cheese. However, something very important is missing for us to finish beautifully 🙂

I'm referring to some of the best recipes that use brie cheese as one of their main ingredients.

Check it out now!

3 Ways to Make and Eat Brie Cheese

I usually bring 3 different recipes, but today I share a recipe video that offers 3 recipes where this delicious cheese is used.

But the part I liked the most was the fact that it was very simple, easy and quick to make, but with a divine result!

Common questions

If you still have doubts about Brie cheese, then we leave you with some questions that have been asked about this delicious cheese.

Check it out now!

Can you eat raw brie cheese?

It is not recommended to eat raw brie cheese unless it has been matured and aged for at least 5 to 6 weeks. While young brie cheese is very tasty, you shouldn't do it for food safety reasons.

What does brie cheese taste like?

The taste of brie cheese is very similar to that of camembert cheese. For many people, it tastes grassy, salty, nutty, fruity and mushroom-like. Its flavor cannot be compared to other cheeses, such as gruyere or the gouda. 

Can you eat the brie rind?

Yes, you can clearly eat the rind of brie cheese, and to be honest with you, the rind is the tastiest part of this cheese.

Why is brie cheese bitter?

then a less suitable coagulant may have been used, which may cause the brie cheese to taste bitter.

final words

If you've come this far, it's because you were interested in reading this article. For our team at the Veh kitchen, it is wonderful that we pleased the reader.

Now that we're done, let us know in the comments if you've eaten the brie cheese and what do you think of its flavor?

If you liked this content or if you have suggestions to improve the next articles, your comment is very welcome, as well as helping us by sharing it with people who are interested in this subject.

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