Dip Into The Fun Of Fondue!
Contributed by: Faith Heinauer of BreakEggs.com
If you want an enjoyably easy and informal way to dine, host a fondue get together... it's a fun, casual and unique way to entertain!
Fondue comes from the French word, fonder, which means
"melt". It refers to food being cooked at the table with it's
own heat source.
Fondue tradition states that if you drop the food off of the
fork, and into the pot, you have to kiss the person next to you.
Start your own rules and traditions!
Classic Cheese Fondue
This is a hearty crowd-pleasing appetizer! Dip chunks of crusty
French bread into this hot & savory classic Swiss fondue. Be sure to
use good quality cheeses and wine.
- 1/2 Tablespoon butter
- 3/4 cup shallots, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1 garlic clove, halved crosswise
- 1 1/2 cups dry white wine*
- 2 teaspoons kirsch (a clear cherry brandy), or cognac
- 1 Tablespoon corn starch
- 2 cups (1/2 pound) Emmental cheese*, coarsely grated
- 2 cups (1/2 pound) Gruyère cheese, coarsely grated
- white pepper
Melt the butter in a heavy medium skillet over medium heat. Add
the shallots and sugar; sauté until shallots are caramelized, about
8 - 10 minutes. Transfer the shallots to a dish.
Rub the inside of a heavy medium saucepan with the garlic.
Discard the garlic.
Add the wine to the pot and bring just to a simmer over medium
Stir in the kirsch. The wine mixture should barely simmer, but
must be at a simmer for the cheese to melt properly. Bubbles should
just break the surface.
Place the shredded Emmental cheese, Gruyère cheese and
cornstarch in a sealable plastic bag. Shake to evenly coat the cheese
with the cornstarch.
Add the shallots to the wine mixture.
Gradually add the cheese to the wine mixture. Add handfuls at a
time, stirring until the cheese melts and is smooth before adding
more. (Increase heat slightly if cheese is not melting, but make sure
not to boil!).
Season with salt, white pepper and nutmeg (a couple dashes of
each). Taste and add additional seasonings.
Transfer the cheese mixture to a fondue pot.
* To make the fondue alcohol free: Replace the wine and kirsch with
3/4 cup chicken stock, and 3/4 cup milk.
Preparation time: 15 minutes - Cooking time: 30 minutes
*Emmental cheese (also referred to as Emmentaler, Emmenthaler) is a
firm-textured nutty, sweet and mellow cheese that is made in
Switzerland. Gruyère cheese is a firm, rich, sweet and nutty Swiss
Place any leftover fondue in scrambled eggs, or over steamed
Boiled shrimp, cubed cooked chicken, steamed fingerling potatoes,
blanched asparagus spears, grilled mushrooms, granny smith apples,
pears, blanched broccoli
Small pieces of meat are fried at the table and then dipped into a
quick-to-make creamy horseradish sauce.
- 2 pounds beef tenderloin, cut into 1/2 to 1-inch cubes
- 3 cups vegetable oil*
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 Tablespoons horseradish
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
To make the sauce, combine the sour cream, mayonnaise,
horseradish, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a bowl. Set aside. Makes
about 1 cup of sauce.
In a fondue pot over medium-high heat, heat the oil until it
registers 375°F on a deep-frying thermometer.
Transfer the pot to a fondue burner with a high flame.
Have guests skewer the beef with a fondue fork, and season with
salt and pepper, if desired. Allow guests to cook the meat to their
liking - 1 minute for rare, 2 minutes for medium-rare, 3 to 4 minutes
for well-done. Serve with the horseradish sauce.
* For a healthier version, replace the oil with a beef broth.
Preparation Time: 10 minutes - Cooking Time: 5 minutes
Serves: 4 - 6
A sweet and sublime way to end a meal!
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup corn syrup
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
Sift the cocoa powder into a mixing bowl, and set aside.
In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the water, sugar,
and corn syrup for 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently.
Reduce the heat to low, and stir in the heavy cream. Pour the
cocoa powder into the mixture and blend with a whisk until smooth.
Simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the chopped chocolate.
Pour into a fondue pot and keep warm.
Preparation Time: 5 minutes - Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Pound cake, strawberries, bananas, pineapple, marshmallows, Oreo®
cookies, chocolate chip cookies, angel food cake, graham cracker
quarters spread with marshmallow crème or peanut butter
Fondue Party Tips:
** You will need a fondue pot (or several fondue pots). Fondue
pots come with burner units fueled by electricity, sterno
(alcohol) or fuel paste. Thick pottery-like pots, such as
earthenware and ceramic, work best for delicate fondues like
cheese and chocolate. Metal pots are best for fried fondues
because they can withstand the high heat (earthenware may crack
at higher temperatures). Electric fondue pots are best because of
the adaptability and ease in changing and controlling the
** Have a fondue fork for each guest. You may want to
individually mark each fondue fork for the guests to
differentiate their forks. Purchase additional forks at food
** You will need plates with separate compartments, or a lot of
small plates. Make sure to have a lot of napkins for your guests.
** Cover the table with a washable tablecloth (fondue can be a
little bit messy).
** Place the fondue pot in the center of a small, sturdy round
table. You will need a table where it is easy for the guests to
reach the fondue. Typically the table should accommodate four
people per table. For larger parties, set up several tables with
a fondue pot on each table.
** Strategically place an assortment of dipping ingredients
around the table.
How To "Spear" The Fondue:
- 1.) Spear the food with the fondue fork.
- 2.) Dip the food into the pot and stir.
- 3.) Lift and slowly twirl.
- 4.) Move plate beneath the fork and eat.
Faith Heinauer is a caterer, cookbook author, columnist,
and the creative force behind her website, http://www.breakeggs.com
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