Cranberry, Brie, and Thyme Puff Pastry Bites

  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 10x10-inch sheets puff pastry, thawed 
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 4 ounces Brie cheese, cold
  • chopped fresh Thyme, for garnish, roughly 1 tbsp
1.  Pull the puff pastry from the freezer and let it thaw.

2.  First, prepare the cranberry sauce: Combine the cranberries, orange juice, water, honey, cinnamon, and salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 10 minutes, until the cranberries break down and thicken. Let cool.

3.  Unfold the thawed puff pastry on a lightly floured work surface. With a rolling pin, gently roll the pastry so that it is an even 11-inch square. With a 1 1/2-inch round cookie cutter ( or pie stamps ) cut circles out of the pastry (makes about 48 rounds total, depending on what size of cookie cutter you use).

4.  Beat the egg in a small bowl, then lightly brush each pastry. One half of the pastry cut-outs, spoon approximately 1/4 teaspoon cranberry sauce and 1 small piece Brie cheese, rind included. Then sprinkle just a dash of fresh thyme on top.

5.  Carefully place the remaining pastry rounds on top of the Brie and cranberry, brushed egg side down. Pinch the ends closed. Prick each pastry with a fork to allow the air to escape. Repeat with second pastry sheet.

6.  Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat. Place pastry on the prepared sheet and brush lightly with egg. Bake for 12 to 16 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Notes: you can assemble unbaked puff pastry bites and freeze them for later. Do not brush the egg wash on them if you are going to freeze them. Freeze them in an airtight bag. When you want to bake them, pull them out of the freezer and then brush them with the egg wash. Baking temperature is the same - 375, but you will need to bake them a few minutes longer.  You can also fully bake the pastry puffs and freeze them then reheat them in the oven.

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