Fun, Friends & FONDUE

What could be more fun than sharing food together with friends especially during big long weekend like this coming Memorial Day weekend. Cool evenings bring that craving for something warm and yummy to share. All seasons fondue? Why Not!

Fondue, which comes from the French “fondre”, meaning “to melt,” had its origins in 18th century Switzerland. It was a means for farm families to stretch their limited resources during the winter months. But here we are in the modern times, fondue just means party dish. Lou Seibert Pappas, in his book “Fondue”, said that a fondue party offers many rewards. It is convivial and distinctive. Preparations are easily made in advance. Hosts cherish being able to enjoy their guests, as the cooking is done at the table, meaning cleanup is minimal.

Traditionally the classic fondue needs three basic ingredients, great Swiss cheeses like Gruyere, Emmental, dry wine and garlic rubbed in the fondue pot. You can also make beer cheese fondue.

What to dip in your cheese fondue for Late Spring – Early Summer?

  • Torn baguettes – tear into 2 inch chunks.
  • Roast beef thin slices.
  • Cooked fresh sausages.
  • Asparagus, Fennel, Broccoli – Roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper 6 minutes in a 400F oven.
  • Steamed firm potatoes such as Yukon Gold – Steam about 15- 20 minutes.
  • If you like them raw, apples and pears are great fondue dippers as well as baby carrots.

How about dessert fondue? You end your meal with this indulgent Crème Fraîche and Semi-Sweet Chocolate Fondue. What to dip in your dessert fondue?

  • Strawberry
  • Marshmallow
  • Oatcakes and Cubed Pound cake.
Classic Cheese Fondue

WINE CHEESE FONDUE. 8 ounces Emmental cheese or classic Swiss cheese, 8 ounces Gruyere cheese, 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 1 clove garlic, halved, 2 cups dry white wine, such as Riesling, 3 tablespoons kirsch, Dash of freshly grated nutmeg, salt and pepper (optional). HOW TO? Shred both cheeses. Toss them lightly with cornstarch. Rub the insides of the fondue pot with garlic and discard the garlic. Pour the wine into the pot and set over low heat until bubbles rise. Add cheese gradually and stir until all cheese is melted. Avoid complete boil. Stir in kirsch, Sprinkle with nutmeg, Season with salt and pepper.

BEER CHEESE FONDUE. 8 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, 8 ounces shredded Swiss cheese or Smoked Gouda, 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1 clove garlic, halved, 1 bottle of your favorite beer (Belgian Ale will be my choice). A dash of Tabasco. HOW TO? Combine Cheddar cheese, Swiss cheese/Smoked Gouda, flour, salt, and black pepper in a bowl. Rub cut side of garlic clove around bottom and sides of fondue pot. Pour beer into fondue pot and slowly bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, about 5 minutes.  Gradually stir cheese mixture into beer, adding small amounts at a time, until cheese is melted and blended, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in Tabasco.

Or you can grab the kit at Reverie’s cheese shop: Fondü, get your fondue pot and ready for dipping those yummy morsels in melted cheesey goodness. Just remember be creative on selecting what to dip in your fondue pot. It is Fun!

Author: Riko Chandra

Published in The Lakeside Ledger, 05252017