Spinach, Brie Grilled Cheese with Figs

Get your greens in with this spinach Brie grilled cheese.

Who doesn’t love a grilled cheese? Something about this cheese sandwich makes us want to melt. But, have you ever tried a Brie grilled cheese? This is a delightful way to dress up a familiar sandwich and the addition of spinach is a great way to get your greens in. We have a hunch that one taste of this spinach grilled cheese with Brie and our California Figs will make this a new family favorite.

Spinach, Brie Grilled Cheese with Figs


Course Main Course
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/4 cup yellow onion, sliced
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups baby spinach, rinsed and drained
  • 8 slices sourdough or boule bread
  • 8 ounces Brie cheese (more or less to taste)
  • 1 cup Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Mission Figs, stemmed and thinly sliced

Instructions

  1. In a large skillet, melt 1/4 tablespoon butter. Add onions and salt, and cook over low heat for 7-10 minutes. Remove onions and set aside.

  2. In same skillet, melt 1/4 tablespoon butter. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add spinach and stir until wilted.

  3. ONIONS OPTION: You can skip cooking the onions separately. If so, then DICE the onions, and add them to the skillet 2-3 minutes before adding the garlic.

  4. Lay 4 slices of bread on a flat surface. Spread cheese equally across all 4 slices of bread. Top with figs and then spinach mixture, all spread equally across bread slices. Cover each with top slice of bread, and butter the outside of the top slices.

  5. Turn on heat to medium. When skillet is warm, add sandwiches, buttered side down.

  6. Place another clean skillet on top of sandwiches, and press down. You should hear a little bit of sizzle. Toast bread for 3 minutes. Remove top skillet, and butter the bread. Carefully flip sandwiches over, and replace the clean skillet on top. Toast for another 3 1/2 minutes.

  7. Remove sandwiches and repeat with remaining sandwiches. Slice sandwiches in half, and serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

NOTE ON CHEESE: I use 2 ounces of cheese per sandwiches. Of course, you can use more or less, to taste. With 2 ounces you won't get the dripping, melty cheese, but the cheese still melts beautifully into the sandwich.

Recipe and photo by Karyl Henry

Chocolate Brie en Croute with Dried Figs

Chocolate Brie en Croute with Dried Figs doubles as an appetizer or dessert.

At dessert time, some people have a sweet tooth and others go for a cheese plate. This Brie en croute appeals to both sensibilities or make it for a sweet appetizer. You can also add it as an unexpected addition to a cheeseboard. California Mission dried figs pair magically in this baked Brie en croute recipe with semisweet chocolate. Encased inside the pastry, slice into Marin French Cheese’s Petite Breakfast wheel, perfectly portioned to go inside croissant dough. We used the packaged croissant dough from Immaculate Baking Company, but use whatever packaged croissant dough is available, just make sure to follow the manufacturer’s oven temperature and cooking time on the packaging.

Chocolate Brie en Croute with Dried Figs

Servings 1 Brie en Croute

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup (4.5-ounces) stemmed, minced Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Figs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon Rodelle pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate, divided
  • 1 tube croissant dough
  • 1 Marin French Petite Breakfast Brie wheel

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Cook the figs, water, honey, and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until all the liquid has cooked off, about 8 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes. Stir half of the chocolate into the figs.

  3. Meanwhile, arrange the triangles of croissant dough on the parchment-lined baking sheet into the shape of a star or flower, pressing down to adhere the wide ends to each other, fanning out the long skinny sides like a flower. There will be an empty space in the middle, so fill it with dough, pressing down to adhere it.

  4. Spread 3/4 of the chocolate fig mixture into the middle and ¼ of the way up each "petal" of dough. It will resemble the middle of a sunflower. Set the Brie wheel into the middle. Spread the remaining chocolate fig mixture on top of the Brie. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate on top of the Brie—it’s okay if chocolate falls along the bottom of the Brie wheel. Fold up the petals of the dough into the middle, pressing the tips into one another well, at the top.

  5. Bake until golden brown, about 17-19 minutes. Transfer to a cheeseboard outfitted with fruit, nuts, and crackers.

Recipe & photo by Annelies Zijderveld