Unitasker Wednesday: The brie baker

All Unitasker Wednesday posts are jokes โ€” we donโ€™t want you to buy these items, we want you to laugh at their ridiculousness. Enjoy!

Kitchen gadgets are such easy targets for unitasker selections that I almost feel like I’m cheating when I choose one to feature. This week’s selection was so outrageous, though, that I had to run it. Introducing the brie baker:

What makes the brie baker so bizarre is that it is 7″ in diameter. The standard wheel of French brie is between 9″ and 15″ in diameter, making this dish completely useless for the majority of brie on the market. There are also mini brie wheels, but they’re 4.5″ in diameter, which doesn’t work with the dish, either. Now, I don’t know about you, but size seems like an arbitrary method for selecting cheese to serve to guests and/or family. Maybe I’m weird, but I buy cheese based on flavor, not size.

The other thing that is weird about the brie baker is that it has an incredibly shallow lid. Again, there isn’t a standard height for French brie, so it can be taller than the 2.75″ lid provided. Specifically, a wheel of mini brie might be as tall as 3″ or 4″, similar to a Camembert. This lid would just wobble on top of the brie instead of protecting it.

The uncluttered way to bake brie is to bake it in whatever baking dish you already own, cover it with the lid of your baking dish, and then move the brie to a plate you also already own for serving. No storage space sacrificed for a brie baker you’ll rarely ever use, and no need to buy cheese based on its diameter.

It is a pretty little dish, though. Sadly, pretty doesn’t make it functional.

19 Comments for “Unitasker Wednesday: The brie baker”

  1. posted by Cheese eater on

    I’m just imagining you measuring the cheese in your fridge for exact stats on why this fails

  2. posted by Erin Doland on

    @Cheese eater — Ha! I actually have a book on French cheese that explains all of the government regulations for each of the regional-recognized cheeses. I just looked in the book. But I love the idea of measuring cheese ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. posted by Nana on

    Bake and move to a serving plate?! Nah…bake in a pretty (oven-safe) pan that can go to the table.

  4. posted by priest's wife on

    when I bother to bake brie for a special meal- I use an oven-safe dish that goes directly to the table (I put dried cranberries and wrap it in pastry- no need for a cover)

  5. posted by Cal on

    We don’t even bother with fancy plates and dip into the brie straight from the plain casserole dish it was baked in.

  6. posted by Anita on

    The measuring of cheese made me laugh too. Erin, are you a closet engineer?

    Brie bakers always seemed odd to me – what makes brie so special that it needs its own baking dish?

  7. posted by Jenn on

    Who needs a lid when you wrap the brie in puff pastry before baking?

  8. posted by June Lemen on

    I usually coat the brie in apricot preserves for a sweet/savory contrast, and uncultured person that I am, serve it on the dish on which it was baked.

    I would really like to be on the team that dreams cooking unitaskers up, but I fear for my karma.

  9. posted by Alix on

    You people are making me hungry!!!

  10. posted by Trudy on

    Um… the brie baker would be totally useless to me for one major reason… I didn’t even know one bakes brie! ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. posted by TL on

    I am quite sure other items could be baked in this. I agree with Trudy – you bake brie?

  12. posted by Muriel on

    French girl here,
    why do you bake brie, is it an American way to eat French cheese ???
    I have live in France my whole life (in the brie region) and I have never ever heard of baked brie !

  13. posted by DawnW on

    Please excuse my ignorance,but why would you bake cheese? Unless it’s cheddar on macaroni…

  14. posted by Erin Doland on

    @Muriel and @DawnW — Baking brie is definitely an American thing. You heat it in the oven until the cheese inside the rind gets gooey. Then, you take it out of the oven and usually spread fruit preserves on it (blueberry, currant, strawberry, and fig all go nicely). You then serve the gooey brie and jam on a plain cracker or on apple slices.

    Variations on this include wrapping the wheel of brie in puff pastry and baking it like a pie. Again, you serve it with fruit preserves or honey as a topping.

  15. posted by WilliamB on

    @Anita: Erin, are you a closet engineer?

    Nah. She’s an out-of-the-closet retentive, and makes a (hopefully) nice living using her attribute to help the rest of us.

    hoping the joking & admiring tone comes through
    but with written communications one never knows

  16. posted by DawnW on

    Oh! This American didn’t know that ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. posted by Jenna on

    I actually own a Brie baker I received as a gift, but it does not have a lid and is much bigger than this one, so I use it for lots of other things around the kitchen. Is it supposed to have a lid?! ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. posted by Maren on

    In Germany, we don’t bake brie, we bake camembert. Usually it is covered in breadcrumbs and eaten with cranberry preserver. Very nice! But I would bake the cheese on a paper-lined baking tray. No mess.
    Going home to make dinner now …
    PS What kind of review (Amazon) is “haven’t tried it yet, but it looks good”?!?

  19. posted by SarahJ on

    it looks suspiciously like a pancake warmer, another great unitasker.

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