Fondue for four – 6 June 2011

When P visits, we always ask if he wants to have fondue during his visit. This time he brought it up unbidden.

Of course, the plate never has anything on it but the bread. D cut up a carrot before dinner and handed each of us a stick or two, saying “eat your vegetables!”

The recipe:

Rub the fondue pot with both halves of a cut clove of garlic. Add 2/3 lb grated Gruyere and 1/3 lb grated Emmenthaler (both from the Cheese Board), 1/4 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp pepper (I don’t measure this – just grind), and 2 cups dry white wine. We used Two Buck Chuck (Charles Shaw) Sauvignon Blanc this time and it worked just fine. Heat this on medium till the cheese melts. Meanwhile, mix and have ready 5 tsp cornstarch and 2 Tbsp Kirsch – which we discovered about 7:15 we didn’t have, and D had to run out to BevMo to get some ($24 for a teeny bottle, but it was very good). When the cheese melts, add the cornstarch/Kirsch mixture, and stir till the cheese bubbles (it will thicken) about 2-3 minutes. [For newbies: The fondue pot includes a stand to hold it over a can of lighted sterno, so that the cheese stays molten. Keep flammables away. Put out the sterno by dropping the metal cover carefully back onto it.]

R cut up one Acme rustic baguette at first, but we ended up needing the entirety of the two we had bought. He just cut them down the middle (top to bottom) lengthwise, then crosswise into 3/4″ or 1″ pieces – so each piece had a little “U” of crust on it. It’s important to have crust on each piece so the fondue forks will have something to hold onto, and the bread will have integrity.

D also found this lovely Brouilly at BevMo and bought one bottle – it’s expensive now – and we had that with the dinner. It was really good for the fondue, but I think the dipping activity gets such attention that it is not a fair dinner with which to have a good wine.

The fondue pot was made by the late Mary Grabill (“Song of the Sandpiper” or “Grove Mary”) and given to us by P when he no longer used it. The fondue forks were made by D&R.

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