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Savoury Toasted Cheese
Elaina de Sinistre

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Original Recipe

Savoury Tosted or Melted Cheese

Sir Kenelme Digbie's The Closet Opened, 1669
Cut pieces of quick, fat, rich, well tasted cheese, (as the best of Brye, Cheshire, &c. or sharp thick Cream-Cheese) into a dish of thick beaten melted Butter, that hath served for Sparages or the like, or pease, or other boiled Sallet, or ragout of meat, or gravy of Mutton : and , if you will, Chop some of the Asparages among it, or slices of Gambon of Bacon, or fresh-collops, or Onions, or Sibboulets, or Anchovis, and set all this to melt upon a Chafing-dish of coals, and stir all well together, to Incorporate them ; and when all is of an equal consistence, strew some gross White-pepper on it, and eat it with tosts or crusts of White-breat.  You may scorch it at the top with a hot Fire-Shovel. 



8 ounces Brie
8 ounces cream cheese
1/4 pound of butter (or a little more)
1 pound of sliced bacon
3 to 4 cups of a green vegetable such as broccoli, asparagus, or green beans

Preparation Steps

  1. Put the brie, cream cheese, and butter in a bowl, and set the bowl in warm water to soften the ingredients (or nuke them in the microwave for about a minute).  Mix the butter and cheeses together thoroughly until you have a thick, smooth paste.
  2. Cut the bacon strips in half, and fry them until crisp.
  3. Put your green vegetable (frozen works really fine - donít pre-cook them) in a shallow baking pan and crumble the bacon on top.  Cover with the cheese mixture and spread it to seal from edge to edge of the pan.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes or until the cheese begins to brown nicely. (Or pull our your handy fire shovel, heat it red hot, and hold it over the dish.  Careful!  Donít burn yourself, now!)
  5. Let set five to ten minutes before serving. 

Number of Servings

Not given.

Serving Size

Not given.

Redaction Notes

This recipe may originally have been closer to a fondue than a casserole.  I make it as a casserole to make it easier to transport and eat.  I use both brie and cream cheese for the cheeses and, today, have made it with asparagus as called for in the original recipe.  It is also very good with other green vegetables such as broccoli. (Green beans may seem like a tasty alternative, but remember, theyíre NOT period.)  I put the 'tosts' on the bottom to help sop up the juices, and use American bacon rather than slices of a more ham-like British gammon.  I dispense with  the "Fire-shovel".

The recipe is from Sir Kenelme Digbie's The Closet Opened printed in 1669 by Digbie's nephew and including his uncle's store of recipes used at the court of Elizabeth I.


  • Sir Kenelme Digbie, The Closet Opened, 1669.

Date Of Redaction

None given.

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