Say hello to this warm, salty-sweet, and gorgeous appetizer to hover over at your next party, Baked Gouda!
Who else gets sucked into the gooey cheesy appetizers at parties? I know I can’t be the only one, so c’mon, fess up, this is a judgement free zone. 😉
I have to admit, when fall hits that calendar and then the weather finally catches up and becomes cooler, I find myself standing in front of the cheese aisle a heck of lot more than during bikini season. My cravings for a nice block of cheese are off the scales from late September all the way through the end of February, then I start to panic a little due to the looming summer season. But not to worry, I do have my favorite types of cheese for the warmer weather too, I just don’t devour an entire wheel of it in the course of a single meal.
One of my all time favorites is a nice bit of Applewood smoked Gouda, holy moly yum it’s good stuff and screams “fall” to me.
So for this recipe, I decided to base it off of my other favorite appetizer, a baked brie, then simply change out the brie for the smokey Gouda and, add in some salty-sweet flavors to amp up the flavor, and voila I give you Baked Gouda.
Looking for a twist to your next appetizer? Try this version of Blueberry Baked Brie that I like to make during the holidays.
- For the Pear Compote:
- 2 Pears, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 1/2 tsp ground Ginger
- 1 Tbsp sweet White Wine or Apple Juice
- 1 Tbsp unsalted Butter
- 1 Tbsp Sugar
- Juice of 1/2 Lemon
- 1/2 cup Toasted Walnuts (below)
- For the Toasted Walnuts:
- 1 Tbsp unsalted Butter
- 1/2 Walnuts, roughly chopped
- For the Gouda:
- 1 sheet Puff Pastry, thawed and rolled out to about a 16 x 16
- 4 - 6 oz thinly sliced Prosciutto
- 1 8 oz round of Smoked Gouda, I used an Applewood Smoked Gouda
- 1 egg, whisked with a splash of water to use as egg wash
- In a saucepan over medium heat, add the Pears, Ground Ginger, White Wine, Butter, Sugar and Lemon, stirring to mix well. Cook for about 10 - 12 minutes or until the Pears are softened. Set aside and allow to cool.
- While the Pear Compote is cooling, you can toast the Walnuts. In a skillet over medium heat add the Butter and heat until melted. Add in the Walnuts, stirring occasionally and cook for 3 - 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F . Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the Puff Pastry sheet until it is approximately 16 x 16 and about 1/8 inch thick. Any excess can be trimmed if needed.
- Wrap 6 - 8 slices of Prosciutto around the entire wheel of Gouda (it doesn't have to be perfect, just cover the Gouda on all sides).
- Lay the rolled out Puff Pastry on the parchment lined baking sheet.
- Place the Prosciutto wrapped Gouda in the center of the rolled out Puff Pastry sheet, and starting with one corner at a time drape pastry over the Gouda until you have enclosed it.
- Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the whisked Egg Wash over the Puff Pastry.
- Bake in the center of a preheated 400°F oven for 35 - 45 minutes or until the pastry is golden and puffed.
Mix the Pear Compote with the toasted Walnuts and spoon over the top of the Baked Gouda and enjoy!
You can make the Pear Compote 2 - 3 days before serving, just keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
The Walnuts have the best texture and flavor when toasted on the day needed, and stirred into the pear compote just before topping off the Baked Gouda.