Thursday, February 16, 2012

Fondue: A Play In 3 Acts

Fondue is  fancy French for  "to melt". For those of us that have stood at blackboards conjugating verbs, it is specifically the feminine passive past participle for the French verb fondre (to melt). The first French appearance of the word is usually sited as Vincent la Chapelle’s 1735 Cuisinier modern, but it seems that those rascally Swiss have been dipping chunks of bread into melt cheese and wine since the 1600s.  But when/ by who/why fondue came to be, is only a shadow of how great it is to eat. And eat of it we did this last weekend.

Setting the Scene

Act I: Cheese
 We started with a broth of white grape juice, dried cranberries, and rosemary. Then we added cheese; Cheddar, Swiss and Gouda, by the handfuls.

Take chunks of crusty bread and apples, dip in the golden gooeyness, and that my friends, is bliss on a stick.
Act II: Meat and Veg
The second course started with a beef broth scented with garlic, ginger and scallions. We cooked chunks of carrot, asparagus, mushrooms and zucchini, and then our proteins of beef and pork.

Act III: Dessert
For our third and final course we did not do the typical chocolate. What are we? Like everyone else? Please. We made a peach sauce and poured it over sponge cake and fresh peaches.

Quote of the night: Every time I hear “melted cheese,”  I feel like doing a little awkward dance--C

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