Cheese Fondue
September 25, 2002

Judy Lucianovic, Christmas Eve 2001

About cheese fondue, Kirsch is a liqueur (clear-colored, cherry-flavored) and it is a traditional ingredient. However, don't bother to buy it because a recipe for two would only use one ounce. Crucial to the success of cheese fondue is the cheese. Use half SWISS gruyere and half SWISS emmenthal. Here's the tried-and-true recipe I use for two generous servings:

1 clove garlic
12 ounces dry white Riesling or Chablis wine (Gallo Chablis is good and inexpensive)
12 ounces Swiss cheeses (Gruyere and Emmenthal), finely grated in food processor
2 Tablespoons flour
dash nutmeg, freshly grated
dash cayenne
2 Tablespoons Kirsch (optional)
1 loaf Baguette, cut in bite-size pieces, each with crust

Rub earthenware pot with cut clove of garlic. If you love garlic, smash the clove through a garlic press and add to the pot. Otherwise, discard clove. Pour in wine. Place pot over low heat until air bubbles rise to surface (do not boil). Meanwhile, toss grated cheese with flour. When wine is hot and air bubbles are evident, stir wine and begin adding cheese by handfuls. Continue stirring. Completely melt each handful before adding next. After all cheese is added, keep stirring until mixture starts bubbling lightly. Add nutmeg and cayenne and Kirsch.

Test consistency of fondue by spearing a piece of bread with fork and dipping into fondue. If fondue is too thin, continue stirring over heat for several minutes. If fondue is too thick, thin with a little white wine. When ready, place fondue pot on table heating element and serve.

Keckler's Komments:

Knowing how iffy fondue can be, I was a bit nervous to make this recipe for the first time on New Year's Eve 2001. It came out magnificently due to the incomparable cheese we bought at Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge.

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