Hope everyone had a great weekend! We had a wide open weekend (rare thing) so Saturday we decided to do fondue. We did the whole process from starting with the cheese to the main course of veggies and meats and ended with the chocolate. Since we had three courses of food to enjoy we decided to space them out taking breaks between courses. I mean what better thing to do on a Saturday night than eating for many hours from your couch :). I told myself I really should workout today after all the food I consumed (and wine), but it’s Sunday the day I never workout, so why change things?
Starting with the cheese course my favorite! We usually do Italian bread, green apples, and grapes for what I will call dippers. The bread I just buy premade from the bakery section. I decided to forgo the grapes after realizing they were $7.99 for a bag! That was just too much $ for me to justify buying them. I found a great way to do the cheese, Sargento brand now sells Swiss & Gruyere cheese shredded in one of their Artisan blends. I bought two bags and it was the best fondue cheese course yet, no strings of cheese getting everywhere like other times before. Plus it was only a little over $3 a bag, usually the cheese can be quite expensive.
1 1/2 C Swiss cheese shredded
1 1/2 C Gruyere cheese shredded
(or 2 bags of Sargento Swiss & Gruyere cheese)
1/2 C Pinot Grigio wine
2 garlic cloves pressed
Start a pot on low. Add the cheeses. Once the cheeses starting to melt add the wine, garlic, and a couple shakes of S&P. Continue to melt on low until cheeses are fully melted and the rest of the ingredients are incorporated. Then add to your fondue pot and make sure to have the burner on.
Do you notice the ratio of bread to apples?! I told David I could live off cheese and bread and be a perfectly happy person…..maybe wine included would make me super happy though!
For the main course we actually use broth rather than oil for cooking the veggies and meats. We have done both, but prefer the broth taste and not having the grease. You can essentially pick whatever veggies and meats you want. We used chicken breast, steak, shrimp, mushrooms, onion, cauliflower, and zucchini. You also want to have sauces for dipping. Use whatever sauces you prefer and have in your fridge, we used soy sauce, honey mustard, ranch, horseradish, bbq, and sweet n sour. As you cook the meats and veggies you will be able to tell which ones take a little longer and which ones take shorter time as you move through the cooking process. Generally the shrimp takes the least amount of time where cauliflower would take a little longer. If you are unsure if something is done or not, cut into the meat before eating it to check, I recommend this especially with the chicken and steak.
4 C Chicken Broth
2 garlic cloves pressed
Cook the broth and garlic in a pot on medium until it comes to a rapid boil. Then move to the fondue pot and enjoy! Don’t forget to have the heat on under the fondue pot during the cooking process.
For the dessert course you really only need semi-sweet chocolate. I have used both the chips and candy bars for this. I tried recreating the turtle fondue we had out at Melting Pot one time, but didn’t have as much success as I hoped. The caramel and pecans actually made the chocolate set up pretty quick, so I recommend sticking with just the chocolate. We just used strawberries and pound cake for dippers. If you want a lighter option you could always use angel food cake, that works well too. Again to make it easy I just bought the pound cake from the bakery section of the grocery store.
3 semi sweet chocolate bars
Melt in a pot with the stove on low until the chocolate is completely melted and move to the fondue pot. I often don’t even bother turning the burner on under the pot for the chocolate course. It’s usually a smaller portion and can be finished pretty quickly and more heat often thickens the chocolate.
Fondue is not only a great meal, but is a lot of fun as well. Plus when you do it at home you are saving a lot of money since most fondue dinners out end in an over $100 check and you can do it in your sweats :). I would recommend getting a fondue pot if you do not have one, I bought mine for $25 years ago and it has defiantly gotten used. Mine has a ceramic pot included which is used for the cheese and chocolate course, I would recommend trying to get one with this feature.