Wash hands with soap and water.
Preheat oven to 425ºF.
Peel the top of the rind off of the brie. Discard. Place brie into desired oven-proof serving dish. Hollow out a small, ¼-cup-sized hole in the top of the cheese. Set aside.
Rub the whole lemon under cold running water before cutting the peel for the recipe.
Into a sauté pan add: cranberries, sugar, lemon peel and water. Cook over low heat for approximately10 minutes until sugar is dissolved and cranberries have softened. Stir as necessary.
Increase heat to medium and continue cooking for 10-15 minutes OR until cranberries burst. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Discard lemon peel.
Place ¼ cup of prepared cranberry sauce into hollowed portion of brie and pour the rest of the sauce over the brie.
Bake for approximately 10-12 minutes until cranberries are bubbling and cheese is beginning to lose shape and soften.
Top with optional nuts if desired.