Wednesday, January 5, 2011

How To Fondue (Cheese & Chocolate)

Three-Cheese Fondue

Step 1: Ask friendly German grocer if they sell a fondue mix. If friendly grocer says no, they don't because it's Christmas Eve, and smart people have already bought theirs, like, yesterday, then proceed to step 2.

Step 2: Interrupt said grocer's stocking of refrigerated goods again and ask about which cheeses would be in a fondue mix, were they to have one.

Ingredients for our New Year's Eve Cheese Fondue.

Step 3: Purchase the cheeses she hands you... Le Gruyere, Appenzeller and Emmentaler. All Swiss and all yummy.

The 3 cheeses my grocer recommends for fondue.
Step 4: Melt equal parts in double boiler or fondue pot over medium high heat, then simmer on low. Add a few splashes of white wine. The original Swiss recipe also adds a dash of Kirschwasser (cherry liqueur), but, again, no findy on a major holiday. So we substituted Cointreau (orange liqueur). Lovely texture and flavor!

Almost done. We had trouble keeping the cheese hot in a tealight fondue pot, so opted for a double-boiler.

Step 5: Dip diced bread, potatoes and cooked veggies (broccoli's a winner!) using fondue forks (or long dinner forks will work).

Chocolate Fondue

Step 1: Prepare ingredients while letting first course settle in stomach. Time varies for settling, but an hour or so should do the trick.

Yes, we melted Santas and dipped Oreos. But, look, fruit! See, this is healthy...

Step 2: On low heat while stirring constantly, melt equal parts dark and milk chocolate (I used about 1 cup each). This is really to your taste. We like dark chocolate, though. Chocolate chips melt the quickest (due to larger surface area) but are harder to come by here, so I didn't want to waste them in a goo!

Step 3: Add 2/3 cup of sour cream (about 1 small container); 1/4 cup coffee, orange or mint liqueur (again, we used Cointreau); and 1/4 to 1/2 cup of milk or cream (to consistency).

Step 4: Dip marshmallows, sliced fruit, Oreos and birthday cake to your heart's content.

Step 5: Invite over friends and celebrate!

Make both fondues, and it's a great way to use up your leftover white wine and cream from French cooking experiment!