As the winter day draws to a close and your fingers stiffen from the cold or typing (take your pick) thoughts turn to dinner. Have you decided? I feel like it is time for a fondue. Whether you enjoy it with various artisan breads, cut pears and apples, or if you have a secret family recipe, fondue is simple and quick to make. Just make sure you have good quality cheeses and your favourite dry white wine, I prefer Chasselas which is typically used in Switzerland. Using stronger cheeses, for example a strong Vacherin or an aged Gruyère, gives fondue a nice edge to it. The best though is to experiment with cheese and the types of flavours each contributes. Eventually you too will have a recipe made to perfection.
*image from culturegroup.com
The following recipe is from the Swiss "Betty Bossi" and makes a great base for fondue virgins:
600 gr White bread with rind (Baguette works best) cut into mouth sized cubes and leave aside
400 gr Stronge Gruyère
400 gr Fribourg Vacherin grate both directly into the prepared Caquelon
300 mL White wine (example Chasselas)
1 Tbsp Corn starch mix both together and then add to the grated cheese
1 pc Garlic without the skin (cut in half, before cheese has been added rub on inside of Caquelon)
2-3 Tsp Kirsch add both to cheese
add Musket nut powder, Paprika or Pepper for taste
-once the inside of the Caqyelon has been coated by the garlic (which you can leave inside for added flavour) and the cheese has been added the Caquelon can be placed on the stove top to start melting the cheese, now you can added (one after the other) the remaining ingredients. Make sure the heat is on low and that you stir constantly but slowly. Once the mixture is completely melted serve immediately.
- if the mixture separates (oils from the cheese coming to the top etc.) mix together 1 Tsp. Cornstarch with a small amount of White wine and a drop of lemon juice, and stir into the fondue. This will help to bind the mixture together
- if you don't want to use wine substitute with a non alcoholic apple wine
- use cut up apples, pears, mushrooms etc. for dipping as well